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TRACE Testing Expands Eastward, To Hermiston

Oregon State University

Oregon State University’s prevalence testing for the coronavirus is expanding into northeast Oregon for the first time this weekend.

In theTRACE project, researchers from OSU go door-to-door offering free COVID-19 tests. The goal is to blanket a community with testing in order to determine the prevalence of the virus that causes the disease.

The project kicked off in Corvallis in April, and has since gone to Bend and Newport. Now, it’s making its first visit to Hermiston.

It’s the largest city in Umatilla County, which has the highest per capita rate of positive coronavirus tests of any county in Oregon. It’s also the first set of testing being done in a city where OSU doesn’t have a significant local presence.

“Understanding the spread of coronavirus is crucial to getting a handle on the disease that has impacted our Hermiston community so greatly,” said Hermiston Mayor Dave Drotzmann in an OSU press release.

The school said unlike previous rounds, which were funded by private donors, the Hermiston testing will be paid for by the state of Oregon.

Chris Lehman has been reporting on Oregon issues since 2006. He joined the KLCC news department in December 2018 and became News Director in March 2023. Chris was born and raised in Pennsylvania, and graduated from Temple University with a degree in journalism. His public broadcasting career includes stops in Louisiana and Illinois. Chris has filed for national programs including “Morning Edition” and “All Things Considered.”
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