Some Hoosiers crossing state lines to get tested amid limited supply in Indiana
BERRIEN COUNTY, Mich. --- Rapid tests are becoming harder and harder to find especially in Indiana. The state health department confirmed on Thursday they are completely out of them, but it’s a much different situation right over the state line in Michigan.
The need for COVID-19 testing has skyrocketed nationwide in the last few months and with limited supply across Indiana for rapid testing, InterCare Community Health Network in Benton Harbor said they’ve already seen some Hoosiers crossing the state line to get tested.
“We wanted to go get just a random test to make sure we’re good and it took me five days. I even contacted the 211 and it was just very difficult for St. Joe County to be able to have testing,” said Michiana resident Carrie Hoffman who was looking to get tested in Indiana.
Hoffman is among many having trouble getting tested in the Hoosier state.
Indiana’s State Health Department announced earlier this week they’ve completely run out of rapid tests, with officials on both sides of the state line seeing an increased need.
“Requests and testing needs have skyrocketed obviously with the new variant, Omicron,” said Velma Hendershott the President and CEO of InterCare Community Health Network. “We’re testing an extraordinary number of individuals on a weekly basis, primarily at our largest site which is located at Benton Harbor. So as of just yesterday already we had already tested well over 400 individuals and that’s not counting the number today so we will probably reach another 100.”
Hendershott said those recent numbers have even included some Hoosiers, but unlike Indiana, Michigan officials said they still have an adequate testing supply statewide and they don’t plan on turning any one away.
"We don’t want to make it any more difficult for anyone to get that test through having to go online and register or anything like that. We’ll see our patients, we’ll see all comers,” said Hendershott.
In addition to onsite testing, InterCare Community Health Network also offers free at-home testing kits to anyone who wants one.
Michigan's state health department said they’ve already distributed 4.6 million rapid tests in 2021 and they’ll be partnering with libraries statewide to distribute even more, along with making at-home testing kits free through your insurance.
If you’re looking to find a testing site in Berrien County click here.