Testing For Asymptomatic Nebraskans Could Be Six Weeks Away

April 22, 2020 - 5:40pm

Earlier this week Governor Pete Ricketts announced the state would partner with private companies to collect data on COVID-19 symptoms in Nebraska, which will inform increased testing.

A similar program has been in place for a few weeks in Utah. Organizers say Nebraska is on its way to sufficient participation in the online assessment, but more participation makes the data better.

Participants will be asked to update their symptoms on the online system. Organizers say that data will allow for faster detection of hotspots.

Dave Elkington is founder of XAMP, which helped coordinate testing in Utah. He said testing will start with first responders and eventually move to people without symptoms as it has in Utah.

“We wanted to be able to test non-symptomatic people to evaluate whether there were positive non-symptomatic carriers in the population," Elkington said. "So that’s being done very cautiously and in partnership and guidance with the state health department. That’s a part of the program so that could be as quick as three weeks, it could be as long as a month, a month and a half.”

The program in Nebraska aims to reach 3,000 tests per day, which could take as long as five weeks.



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