Augusta University CMO discusses new saliva testing, progress on COVID-19 fight in CSRA


(WJBF) – Are we actually making progress in the fight against COVID-19? And when will saliva testing be replacing the nasal swab?

Chief Medical Officer of Augusta University Medical Center, Dr. Phillip Coule joined us on NewsChannel 6 at Noon to discuss these topics as well as how Richmond County was doing compared to a month ago, and even 3 months ago.

Overall numbers are dropping by half in Richmond and Columbia Counties. Richmond County cases from 125 to 60 a day, Columbia County from 60 to 30 cases a day.

They’ve also seen as low as 25 hospitalized at one time. He said when they see a slight spike it’s actually from people who aren’t from our area but who are being treated here.

Also mentioned, progress on saliva testing for COVID-19. Dr. Coule says the test should be ready by September 28th, replacing the nasal swab. The test has a 24-hour turnaround for results. AU is one of 3 universities in the country to have this, along with Yale and Rutgers.

Dr. Coule is also asking people to get the flu vaccine so they can determine who has COVID and who has the flu since the symptoms are eerily the same.


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