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Doctors: Testing restraints limit Wyoming COVID-19 detection

CASPER, Wyo. (AP) - A shortage of testing capacity is making it harder for health officials in Wyoming to determine just how many people in the state have been infected with coronavirus, doctors said, while Gov. Mark Gordon sought to expedite delivery of supplies related to the virus.

The nationwide testing shortage includes not enough equipment to reliably move swabs from clinics to labs, the Casper Star-Tribune reports.

Meanwhile, state guidelines limit testing to high-risk cases: the elderly, health care workers and those in contact with people who've! been infected.

People with milder cases, who make up over 80 percent of those with the COVID-19 illness, largely are not being tested.

"Most providers feel like this is the time we should be testing, this is the time we should figure out where the clusters are," Wyoming Medical Center chief of staff Dr. Andy Dunn said. "However, due to the scarcity of the supplies, it is what it is."

As of Friday, 20 people in Wyoming had tested positive for coronavirus.

For most people, the coronavirus causes only mild or moderate symptoms, such as fever and cough. For some, especially older adults and people with existing health problems, it can cause more severe illness, including pneumonia. The vast majority of people recover.

Those with mild or no illness who aren't being tested are the "true spreaders," Dunn said.

An executive order will waive regulations for trucks delivering supplies related to the outbreak, Gordon announced Friday.

The ord! er extends hours of service restrictions and waives size and weight permit fees for such trucks.

News / Regional News / Top Stories / Wyoming

Associated Press

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