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The Missouri National Guard announced Wednesday it will continue to help the state, as it increases COVID-19 testing.

Details about Missouri’s strategy to increase testing, including the guard’s role, will be announced Thursday, Gov. Mike Parson said.

During a news conference, Brig. Gen. Levon Cumpton, the Adjutant General of the Missouri National Guard, said the guard has been working with the Department of Health and Senior Services and other state agencies in preparation for the expansion.

“Right now, Gen. Cumpton and his troops have been given instructions to charge the hill, and at the top of the hill is testing,” Gov. Mike Parson said. “We’re going to make sure that we put all the resources we have in the state to do this testing.”

More comprehensive coronavirus testing, including of asymptomatic patients, has been a focus for Parson since Missouri’s economy reopened May 4. The goal has been to test at least 7,500 people a day.

The guard currently deploys almost 1,000 troops across the state to assist with reopening the economy, Cumpton said. This includes conducting medical screenings at state buildings, distributing meals to school-aged children and supporting an alternate care site in Florissant, Missouri .

Parson said the guard will deploy as many troops as needed to assist with testing expansion.

Missouri also published its own online dashboard of COVID-19 data Wednesday. The data shows the number of COVID-19 cases, deaths, testing and hospitalizations throughout Missouri and its counties.

“The dashboard is a great representation of the trends we’ve been seeing across the state driving our decisions to reopen,” Parson said. “I encourage you to use this to stay informed and up-to-date on the situation in Missouri.”

This article originally ran on columbiamissourian.com.

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