Wilkes Health Director Rachel Willard announced new U.S. Department of Health and Human Services recommendations for prioritizing COVID-19 testing.

The priorities are in three categories.

Priority one (highest priority) for testing are hospitalized patients or healthcare facility workers with symptoms.

Priority two for testing are:

• patients in long-term care facilities with symptoms;

• patients over age 65 years with symptoms;

• patients with underlying conditions with symptoms;

• first responders with symptoms.

Priority three for testing are:

• critical infrastructure workers with symptoms;

• individuals who don’t meet any of the above categories with symptoms;

• healthcare facility workers and first responders;

• individuals with mild symptoms in communities experiencing high numbers of COVID-19 hospitalizations. 

“Non-priority” for testing are people without symptoms.

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