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Indiana aims to increase COVID-19 testing capacity, hires new company

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Justin Hicks/IPB News
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Indiana is hiring a new company to help increase COVID-19 testing across the state.

That comes amid a surge of cases – the state Friday reported its highest number of positives in a day since early January.

The state’s contract with Kentucky-based Gravity Diagnostics will run through June of next year, with an option to extend it further if needed. Gravity will provide supplies and staffing to increase capacity by up to 5,000 tests per day. That includes both rapid antigen testing and PCR tests.

READ MORE: Looking For A COVID-19 Test? Here’s How To Get One

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In the coming weeks, the state and Gravity will establish up to 45 sites around the state, targeting communities that currently lack testing resources.

The Indiana Department of Health said Gravity will also offer voluntary testing in Indiana K-12 schools, working directly with schools to do so.

Testing sites will be posted at the state’s website, coronavirus.in.gov.

The state ended its previous testing contract with the company OptumServe after June, citing low demand. Indiana had averaged about 280 new cases per day in June. In August, the state averaged 2,900.

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

Brandon Smith is excited to be working for public radio in Indiana. He has previously worked in public radio as a reporter and anchor in mid-Missouri for KBIA Radio out of Columbia. Prior to that, he worked for WSPY Radio in Plano, Illinois as a show host, reporter, producer and anchor. His first job in radio was in another state capitol, in Jefferson City, Missouri, as a reporter for three radio stations around Missouri. Brandon graduated from the University of Missouri-Columbia with a Bachelor of Journalism in 2010, with minors in political science and history. He was born and raised in Chicago.