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Indiana to receive more than 2 million COVID-19 antigen tests

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Posted at 11:46 PM, Oct 26, 2020
and last updated 2020-10-26 23:46:12-04

INDIANAPOLIS — The state of Indiana will receive more than 2 million COVID-19 antigen tests to be distributed at the discretion of Gov. Eric Holcomb, the Trump administration announced on Monday.

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services is sending the state 2.02 million of the Abbott BinaxNOW COVID-19 point of care antigen tests. The rapid tests can diagnose the novel coronavirus in as little as 15 minutes.

According to a statement from HHS, the tests will be distributed by Holcomb to support testing K-12 students, teachers, nursing home patients and staff, higher education, critical infrastructure, first responders, and other priorities as Holcomb sees fit.

The administration has shipped more than 358,000 COVID-19 rapid tests directly to congregate care settings such as nursing homes and assisted living facilities in the state. As of Monday, more than 926,000 BinaxNOW tests have been shipped to Indiana.

"To facilitate the continued re-opening of Indiana schools, businesses and economy, the Trump Administration has prioritized scaling up the state's point of care testing capacity by making this $760 million national investment in BinaxNOW tests," Assistant Secretary for Health Admiral Brett Giroir, MD, said. "Distributing these rapid tests directly to states is consistent with the Trump Administration's successful, ongoing approach of testing the right person, with the right test at the right time, is working and the effort will continue until the pandemic is under control."

According to HHS, in preliminary feedback, the state of Indiana said they have sent 243,000 of the BinaxNOW tests directly to long term care facilities. Holcomb is planning to deploy additional tests to K-12 schools to test students along with strike teams to support school events. In addition, Indiana plans to prioritize the Department of Correction and Clinical Laboratory Improvement Amendment-waived sites in orange and red counties.