Health Editor’s Note: The U.S. is experiencing rapid increases in coronavirus cases in some cities and states. Now would be a time to ramp up efforts in testing and contact tracing, not eliminate support for fighting COVID-19…..Carol
Trump administration ending support for 7 Texas testing sites as coronavirus cases spike
by Justine Coleman/The Hill
President Trump’s administration is ending its support for 13 coronavirus testing sites across the country at the end of the month, including seven in Texas, as COVID-19 cases continue to spike in a number of areas nationwide.
Several Texas officials are calling on the administration to extend the support for the sites, with the Houston Health Department’s public health authority writing that the lack of support could cause “catastrophic cascading consequences.” Officials are requesting the funding for these testing locations be extended until Aug. 30.
Four of the seven Texas sites in jeopardy are in Houston and Harris County, which public experts say could become the area worst hit by COVID-19 in the country.
Two of those sites can conduct up to 500 tests per day, which officials say make up the backbone of the city’s testing efforts, The Houston Chronicle reported. Houston has 27 testing sites with most conducting 100 to 250 tests per day.
The other three Texas sites funded by the federal government are split between Dallas, which has two, and El Paso, which has one.