South Dakota health care providers processing COVID-19 tests

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (AP) – Two regional health care providers based in Sioux Falls say they will begin processing tests for the coronavirus after receiving regulatory approval.

Avera Health’s laboratory in Sioux Falls has been verified by the South Dakota Department of Health to perform COVID-19 testing. (photo courtesy Avera Health)

Sanford Health says initially it will process about 400 tests daily with plans to double that number in the coming weeks. Avera Health says it has the capacity to handle about 200 tests daily.

The Argus Leader reports testing was previously done at the state lab in Pierre or by commercial labs.

This will help with the massive backlog of tests that still need to be processed, not just in South Dakota but around the country.

Gov. Kristi Noem said that last week, 50,000 completed COVID-19 tests were processed. Now, more than 300,000 have been processed.

“That’s good news,” the governor said. “That means at the federal level and across the country, more of these tests are going through the system.”