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Missouri continues to see increase in COVID-19 testing

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Posted at 4:38 PM, Jun 09, 2020
and last updated 2020-06-09 17:38:41-04

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Weekly COVID-19 testing capacity has increased more than 220 percent since April 20, according to Todd Richardson, director of the state’s Department of Social Services.

Missouri Gov. Mike Parson set a goal of issuing 7,500 tests per day. On May 19, more than 5,000 PCR tests had been performed. One week later, Richardson said, that number had “more than doubled.”

There has been a focus on increasing testing for the “most vulnerable,” Richardson said.

The state Department of Mental Health conducted testing at 14 facilities, identifying 12 staff members who tested positive, while two staff members across four Missouri veterans homes tested positive.

The Department of Corrections tested staff and inmates at three prisons. Two of the prisons had no positive tests, while the third saw six staff members and 15 offenders test positive for COVID-19.

Testing at 21 youth services facilities revealed that six staff members and 18 youth tested positive for the virus.

“We are containing outbreaks where they otherwise might have been much more severe,” Richardson said.

Over the past two weeks, the state has averaged more than 10,000 tests conducted per weekday.