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COVID-19: Ohio Changes Priority Testing Guidelines

The change is the result of nursing homes racing to identify asymptomatic carriers

While nursing homes and other long-term-care facilities try to separate the sick from the healthy, some facilities are struggling to get tests to properly do so. A change in priority testing guidelines might ease the issue.

The Ohio Department of Health (ODH) updated its testing guidance Wednesday to include testing for residents and staff members in congregate settings, such as long-term-care facilities, with known COVID-19 exposure who are not showing symptoms. Previously, only people who had symptoms received priority.

The change should help long-term-care providers get testing for those in their facilities on a larger scale, but to test everyone, such facilities — which include assisted-living and other skilled-nursing operations — are having to rely on connections to local hospitals and private labs with capacity for testing. That’s because the state Health Department has been conducting only five COVID-19 tests per long-term-care facility.

Please select this link to read the complete article from The Columbus Dispatch.

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