Indiana Lags In COVID-19 Testing; State Officials Offer Few Clues As To Why

Apr 8, 2020

State Health Commissioner Dr. Kris Box says the state has struggled with resources to do enough COVID-19 tests, though it’s increasing its capacity. (Lauren Chapman/IPB News)

Indiana lags behind neighboring states in testing for COVID-19 and state officials didn’t offer many clues Wednesday as to why.

Data from the State Department of Health shows Indiana is testing fewer people for COVID-19 per 100,000 residents than all its neighboring states and the U.S. as a whole.

State Health Commissioner Dr. Kris Box says the state has struggled with resources to do enough tests, though it’s increasing its capacity.

“So, we’re really trying to remove any restrictions for people as far as testing anybody who’s symptomatic,” Box says.

Current maximum testing capacity in Indiana – between the state and private labs – is about 3,700 tests per day. The state hopes to increase that to more than 6,000 per day as more private labs come online.

Box says the state is also trying to increase testing in regions of the state where data shows there’s a higher risk of the disease.

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Box did not say, when asked, whether Indiana will ever be able to test anyone who wants one.

Contact Brandon at bsmith@ipbs.org or follow him on Twitter at @brandonjsmith5.

This is a rapidly evolving story, and we are working hard to bring you the most up-to-date information. However, we recommend checking the websites of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention or the Indiana State Department of Health for the most recent numbers of COVID-19 cases.