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Whitmer — Supply issues hinder testing

LANSING, Mich. (AP) — Gov. Gretchen Whitmer told Congress Tuesday that Michigan still lacks enough supplies to fully ramp up testing for the coronavirus and said it is difficult to determine what the U.S. government is shipping.

Frustrated hairdressers, meanwhile, said during a legislative hearing that the governor should let them reopen for business.

Whitmer said while the state is appreciative for the federal assistance, information about the types of swabs and other testing supplies being delivered is sometimes inaccurate.

“It’s made our planning very difficult,” the governor testified remotely to the House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations, which also heard from the governors of Colorado and Arkansas. “Supplies could be allocated more quickly. If we had a detailed breakdown of what was actually in the shipment, we could mobilize and ensure that we can make the best use of the supplies and hit our capacity.”

As of Sunday, about 13,400 COVID-19 diagnostic tests were conducted per day over the previous week. That is near Whitmer’s short-term goal of 15,000 a day but short of the 25,000 she said could be done with additional supplies across at least 67 labs in the state.

Whitmer renewed her call for Congress to help states address budget holes by providing additional flexibility and funding.

Safe Salons for Michigan said Michigan is the only state where all salons are closed or do not have a reopening date.

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