The Board of Douglas County Commissioners today unanimously approved up to $3,037,696 in federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act funding for community testing and case investigation/contact tracing to assist in the containment of local COVID-19 transmission in Douglas County.
Funds approval came in the form of the County’s $1,937,696 million Intergovernmental Agreement (IGA) with the Tri-County Health Department (TCHD) for testing and case investigation through Nov.30, 2020; and a separate $1.1 million contract with STRIDE Community Health Center to administer COVID-19 testing via mobile unit starting Sept. 1, 2020 – Dec. 20, 2020.
These combined actions aim to keep the County’s COVID-19 transmission rate low and meet the TCHD recommendation of 515 tests per day in Douglas County.
“We recognize the huge step forward in the containment of COVID-19 today with these two decisions,” said Board Chair and Commissioner Roger Partridge. “We look forward to our partnership with STRIDE and our continued relationship with Tri-County Health as our public health services provider, now and into the foreseeable future,” Partridge said.
“Actions do speak louder than words as we demonstrate with today’s decisions that the continuity of public health services delivery to our citizens and business community is firmly in place with Tri-County Health, as we work collaboratively to contain transmission of COVID-19 and maintain other public health services,” said Commissioner Abe Laydon.
“Our path forward with Tri-County Health continues to be focused on the sustainability of important public health services delivery, while working together on a new Tri-County Health governance and policy decision autonomy model, in the best interest of those we collectively serve,” said Commissioner Lora Thomas.
The STRIDE Community Health Center contract will enable traditional and rapid diagnostic testing, as well as antibody testing, via mobile testing events at locations throughout the County. Those with and without insurance coverage who live or work in Douglas County are eligible to receive testing.
“Having these testing events gives us greater ability to test individuals who have symptoms of COVID-19 and that is essential to containing the spread of the virus, said John Douglas, Jr., MD., Executive Director of the Tri-County Health Department. If you have symptoms of COVID-19, you should isolate yourself and get tested as soon as possible.”
Local events will encourage testing of anyone experiencing symptoms or who had contact with an individual who has tested positive. High-risk and high-priority populations will also be eligible, including those in congregate care and residential living settings; older adults; those living with compromised immune systems or certain diseases and conditions; health care professionals; educators; first responders and essential workers.
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