DHEC is ‘not aware’ of any COVID-19 test shortages

Grand Strand

CONWAY, S.C. (WBTW) — Leaders at the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control said they are not aware of a shortage of testing supplies.

Several News13 viewers reached out about difficulties they faced in obtaining a test.

“DHEC is not aware of any shortages of tests or supply at this time while increased demand has meant that people have had to wait longer in line maybe compared to last month to get tested at sites,” said Brannon Traxler, the public health director of DHEC. “Increased demand has not significantly impacted the average resulting time. DHEC and our testing vendors are still producing our test result within that 24 to 48 hours.”

Several local hospital systems like Tidelands Health and the Grand Strand Regional Medical Center are not testing non-symptomatic patients. While at Conway Medical Center, the demand for tests was so large, leaders there decided to reopen its drive-thru testing site.

“We’re seeing a huge demand for testing and to be honest with you one of the reasons we opened that drive-thru testing site was simply to be able to allow patients who are otherwise coming to our emergency department wanting tests, to be able to get it done in a more efficient manner because our emergency room is so backed up right now,” said Paul Richardson, Conway Medical Center’s chief medical officer.

Appointments at the site are required and have been fully booked every day.

While appointments are needed at most pharmacies, they are not needed at DHEC-sponsored testing sites within local health departments.

Click here to find a testing site.

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