LDH announces partners to execute comprehensive testing plan; state at 11 percent positivity rate

The Louisiana Department of Health has contracted with 11 partners as part of its comprehensive testing plan that will be submitted on May 30 to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, which outlines how the state will increase testing across the state and especially in congregate settings where the risk of spread is high.

(For a summary of Louisiana’s comprehensive testing plan, click here.)

 

 

As of May 28, 347,647 tests have been reported to the State with an overall 11.1% positivity rate, which means 11.1% of total tests reported actually turned out positive for COVID-19. The federal goal is less than 10% positivity. This month 186,776 tests have been completed with the expectation that the 200,000 tests goal for the month of May will be met in the coming days.
The state’s comprehensive plan includes four goals for the months of May and June:
  • Increase baseline testing by 100,000 tests by the end of May
  • Achieve monthly statewide testing at 4% per capita
  • Achieve 2% per capita tested in all parishes by the end of May
  • Achieve positivity of 10% or less as a state and regionally

Louisiana’s testing plan features a multipronged approach to test vulnerable populations, including congregate settings (such as nursing homes and correctional facilities), communities with insufficient access to testing (including African American and rural communities), and populations that require specialized approaches to testing (including populations with special needs). The Governor’s Health Equity Taskforce provided feedback on this comprehensive plan to ensure increased testing across the state addresses and reaches these communities.

The State continues to expand overall testing capacity through the State Lab, partnerships across the state and with contracts to meet any gaps in testing capacity. The State has recently executed contracts for laboratory services, community testing, Congregate Facility Testing Teams (CFTT) and Infection Control Assessment and Response (ICAR) teams.

Laboratory services will work to quickly, efficiently and correctly test and report COVID-19 Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) results. Community testing teams will work within their communities to staff mobile and diagnostic testing sites. CFTTs will work in congregate settings as needed. ICAR teams will provide information, tools and resources to control and prevent the spread of COVID-19 in healthcare settings. Infection control assessments will be conducted onsite at facilities and include review of safety and cleaning practices, visitor restrictions, monitoring and screening of residents and staff, PPE use and a plan for resident grouping based on positivity rates.

The state is partnering with the following 11 commercial providers.

Provider
Contracted Service
Omega Diagnostics, LLC
Lab Services
Premier Lab Services
Lab Services
Stone Clinical Laboratories
Lab Services
Tulane University Health Sciences Center (contract pending)
Lab Services
LCMC Health
Testing Services – Regions 1, 3 & 9
2 CFTTs, 2 ICAR teams
LSU Health Sreveport
Lab Services
Testing Services – Region 7
4 Community teams, 2 ICAR teams
New Orleans East Hospital
Testing Services – Regions 1, 3 & 9
1 Community team
Ochsner Clinic Foundation
Testing Services – Regions 1, 2, 3, 4 & 8
5 CFTTs, 5 ICAR teams
Pafford Medical Services, Inc.
Testing Services – Regions 2, 4, 5, 6 & 7
8 CFTTs, 8 ICAR teams
Safety Management System, LLC
Testing Services – Regions 1, 2, 3, 4 & 8
5 CFTTs, 5 ICAR teams
Southwest LA AHEC
Testing Services – Regions 2, 4, 5 & 7
8 CFTTs, 6 ICAR teams

LDH’s Office of Public Health will deploy partners to communities and regions where needs are identified.

Additionally, under the Federal Families First Coronavirus Response Act, Louisiana Medicaid will cover testing for coronavirus for Louisiana residents without health insurance. Coverage includes COVID-19 testing and testing-related services, like doctor’s office visits when the test is performed.

This coverage is available to people without insurance who are Louisiana residents until the end of the federal public health emergency. You must also be a U.S. citizen or meet immigration status requirements to qualify. The testing must be completed by a Medicaid provider.