COVID-19 SELF-TESTING (CVDST) INITIATIVE

CVDST among African Americans in Rural NC

This project sought to increase the awareness of and capacity for COVID-19 self-testing (CVDST) among African Americans residing in rural communities in North Carolina.

The Impact

This program enabled us to characterize the barriers and facilitators of COVID-19 testing among African Americans in rural North Carolina. Moreover, we assessed the acceptability and feasibility of CVDST among African Americans in rural NC. Specifically, through focus groups and direct observations, the team was able to characterize CVDST kits’ ease of use and identify challenges during self-administration.

The Challenge

Lack of awareness of one’s COVID-19 status drives forward viral transmission, increasing the likelihood of viral mutations that could lead to difficult-to-contain variants and increased COVID-19-related morbidity and mortality. The uptake of COVID-19 self-testing (CVDST) could address socio-structural barriers that prevent African Americans residing in rural communities from utilizing the testing resources available in their communities.

The Approach

The primary goal of this program was to increase the awareness of and capacity for CVDST among African Americans residing in rural communities in North Carolina. The project sought to elucidate barriers to and facilitators of CVDST uptake, including exploring the acceptability of CVDST among African Americans in rural communities; assessing the usability of CVDST kits; identifying self-testing preferences; and providing recommendations that would help to facilitate CVDST use in target communities. Key activities include:

- Focus groups with community members around education and testing for COVID-19; and

- Direct observations of individuals engaging in self-testing.

The Team

Mysha Wynn, MA of Project Momentum, Inc (PMI)

Dr. Tiarney Ritchwood, PhD, Research Consultant

Contact

Mysha Wynn, Principal Investigator myshapmirmt@outlook.com

Project Highlights

The COVID-19 Testing for African Americans in Rural North Carolina project… 

  • Served Black/African American populations, and underserved rural populations

  • Resulted in...

    • 252 people reached as part of testing efforts

    • 6 focus groups on COVID-19 education and testing were completed with 96 community members

Key Benefits

Clinical
  • Utilized COVID-19 self-test kits to screen participants for COVID-19 in target communities.

Community
  • Increased accessibility to COVID-19 testing by providing CVDST kits to individuals in rural communities, eliminating barriers to CVDST uptake. 

  • Distributed educational resources via focus groups with community members focused on education and testing for COVID-19