The Wisconsin Department of Health Services is “well on the way” to achieving its announced goal of testing every resident and staff member in long term care facilities for COVID-19 during the month of May, according to DHS Deputy Secretary Julie Willems Van Dijk.

“Out of the 366 skilled nursing facilities in Wisconsin, 266 of them have requested testing supplies from us.” Willems Van Dijk said Tuesday. “Many of them are conducting testing within their own facilities. Some of them need assistance from the National Guard, and the National Guard has been responding and assisting some of those facilities with testing. So we’re well on our way to achieving that goal.”

Wisconsin National Guard Adjutant General Paul Knapp said Guard members are being redeployed to assist with COVID-19 testing around the state. “So we’ve taken some of the teams, three of them in fact, and broken them down into smaller squads so that they’re more deployable and more agile to get out to some of the long-term facilities and nursing homes, to help meet that requirement.”

Knapp said Tuesday that guard personnel will be available as long as a need exists.

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