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The State Lab has Limited Coronavirus Tests and is Unsure When More will be Available

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Our bordering states, like South Dakota and Minnesota, are slowing the rate of coronavirus testing due to a lack of tests.

In today’s Your Health First, KX News checked in with the North Dakota Division of Disease Control to find out if we too, will hit that point soon.

According to Director Kirby Kruger, as of late Wednesday, we had about 1,600 to 1,800 tests available.

And the number of tests the state is running has picked up daily. Kruger said, at this point, it’s impossible to predict how many more supplies the State Public Health lab will be able to bring in because the supply chain has been unreliable.

Most of the test supplies come from the International Reagent Resource, which operates under the national CDC, and then Kruger said there are some private suppliers.

He said the state is not at the point where we need to start limiting tests yet, and private suppliers are beginning to make tests. But, right now, he has no idea when that will happen.

“We are going to plan for that, and if we need to rollback, we hope we don’t have to, but if we need to rollback, I think we need to be prepared to do that. You know, when we place orders, what we’ve been getting is either the order is downsized, or we’re told that it’s on backorder and we don’t know when it’s going to come, so it’s been a challenge,” said Kruger.

It is up to healthcare providers now to decide whether someone needs to be tested or not. Kruger said certain demographics aren’t necessarily tested before others, but you do have to have symptoms.

He said as far as he knows, only the State Public Health Lab is conducting tests at this point.

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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