Arizona Department of Health Service funds wastewater testing in Yuma County
PHOENIX (KYMA, KECY) - Arizona Governor announces a $500,000 fund to a wastewater testing pilot project to provide early detection of COVID-19 in Yuma County.
In a press release on Wednesday, Gov. Ducey says this project is a joint partnership with Yuma County Public Health Services District, the University of Arizona, and the Arizona Department of Health Services.
“The wastewater testing pilot project in Yuma is a crucial step to expand an innovative technology that may help with early detection of COVID-19,” said Governor Ducey. “This initiative will help local public health officials make fact-based, community-driven decisions, and best mitigate COVID-19 spread during the pandemic.”
The pilot program will collect wastewater samples twice a week in various locations across Yuma County and test for COVID-19. The University of Arizona’s Yuma Center of Excellence for Desert Agriculture will then analyze the samples at its Yuma lab and share data with public health officials.
“This approach has shown promise at identifying COVID-19 transmission quickly and enabling a targeted public health response to mitigate the spread,” said ADHS Director Dr. Cara Christ. “We’re eager to see the results when it’s applied in greater Arizona and applaud the collaboration that’s making it possible.”
The governor's office says Yuma County now joins the City of Tempe, which has used wastewater testing to detect COVID-19.
Today’s funding comes from federal coronavirus relief dollars through ADHS.