After a yearlong study conducted in collaboration with SC Strong during 2020-2021 and over 10,000 survey participants, we learned the most common barriers to SARS-CoV-2 testing in SC were inconvenient times and dates, discomfort, and lack of knowledge of where to go to get tested.
ALL-IN SC is a study aimed to assess the accuracy and usefulness of self-collection testing for COVID-19 and future health concerns.
In 2020 an UNESCO report indicated that pandemics will increase in frequency and severity due to the continued changes in the environment. Still battling the COVID-19 pandemic, public health professionals work hard to be prepared for future pandemics. We have learned that early stages in the pandemic can exceed the laboratory and contact tracing capacity, yielding a need for rapid and accessible diagnostics.
Although unintentional, disparities still exist with the current testing infrastructure, challenging accessibility and people’s ability to seek testing within their work hours. Mistrust among vulnerable populations has also contributed to lack of testing and subsequent disease status.
These factors resulted in a greater burden of COVID-19, specially among South Carolina’s minorities and historically underrepresented populations.
We developed this project, to advance the health of all South Carolinians, engaging in dynamic conversations with minority, marginalized and rural populations, and further assessment of the acceptance and utility of at-home testing, to enhance the pandemic public health response.
Project Objectives and Study Aims
Objective: Advancing the health of all South Carolinians by engaging in dynamic conversations with minority, marginalized, and rural populations, and assessing the acceptability-utility of at-home testing for enhanced pandemic public health response among these residents.
- Aim 1: Execute focus groups with historically underrepresented populations to elevate their perspectives, concerns, and needs to public health leadership for tailored COVID-19 pandemic response.
- Aim 2: Determine diagnostic utility and capacity for DHEC to promote at-home COVID-19 testing using comparative at-home vs. ‘gold standard’ molecular diagnostics using statistical accuracy analyses of local, representative state residents.
This research was supported in part by the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Grant NH75OT000099-01-00: South Carolina’s Initiative to Address COVID-19 Health Disparities Among Populations at High-Risk and Underserved, Including Racial and Ethnic Minority Populations and Rural Communities. The CDC did not have a role in the design of the study, the collection, analysis, or interpretation of data, nor in writing the manuscript.