Governor Greg Abbott announced Friday that the federal government has granted his request to expand Community Based Testing Cites operations across Texas.
The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services told NBC 5 on Friday afternoon that it will extend 14-day support for five community testing sites in Texas and also provide additional resources to transform those five sites. in fully state-run test sites.
“The growth in COVID-19 cases is an extremely concerning public health issue. The Trump administration fully supports the public health needs of all states, including the State of Texas, as they respond to the recent increase in positive COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations,” the HHS said. “We will continue to closely monitor COVID-19 diagnoses and assess the need for additional federal support for these sites as the extension date approaches.”
Testing for COVID-19 will continue at community testing sites like the American Airlines Center and Ellis Davis Field House. Testing at these sites started with 250 people per day, but was expanded to 500 tests per day at each site. Now, testing at Ellis Davis Field House has increased to 1,000 tests per day.
According to Judge Clay Jenkins, the University of Dallas will replace the American Airlines Center testing site and continue to administer 500 tests per day.
Federal assistance allows these community testing sites to continue testing, as the federal government pays for test kits and testing at offsite labs.
“The State of Texas remains steadfast in its efforts to ensure access to testing in communities across the state,” Abbott said. “These federally supported test sites are a critical part of that commitment. I thank our federal partners for expanding these operations in Texas and for their flexibility in allocating their resources to the communities of Dallas and Houston. who are experiencing high numbers of COVID-19 cases right now. By continuing to increase testing and remaining vigilant against outbreaks of COVID-19, we will mitigate the spread of this virus and keep our communities safe.
In May, the federal government extended funding for testing sites until June 30, but local leaders, including Judge Clay Jenkins and Mayor Eric Johnson, requested another extension due to a second wave of the virus. .