COLUMBIA, S.C. (WCBD) – The Department of Health and Environmental (DHEC) on Friday announced that it will provide additional at-home COVID-19 tests and increase the number of testing sites as the agency experiences a backlog in processing test results due to the recent surge in cases.

According to DHEC, about 97% of COVID-19 tests are outsourced to overwhelmed, non-DHEC labs for processing.

Specifically, DHEC said that Premier Medical Laboratory failed to notify DHEC about a significant delay in processing tests that resulted from skyrocketing cases the week of December 27.

DHEC says that its lab is not experiencing delays, but can only process about 2,500 samples per day.

The agency is working to clear the backlog, but is urging anyone tested between December 30 and January 3 who has not yet received test results but is still symptomatic to get retested.