Daily Update: UW Health Lab Ramps Up COVID-19 Testing
Madison, Wisconsin - Thanks to hard work and dedication from our talented faculty and staff, UW Health's lab has increased its capacity for in-house COVID-19 testing. Since in-house testing at University Hospital began on March 19 the turnaround time for results has gone from three days to a few hours.
Although UW Health is not able to do widespread testing, we are prioritizing the testing of patients with suspected symptoms and employees who may have had contact with a COVID-19 patient.
Not only does rapid testing allow UW Health to provide quicker answers to patients and staff, it also allows UW Health to conserve Personal Protective Equipment. Known COVID-19 positive patients require a higher usage of PPE than identified COVID-19 negative patients. Understanding which patients are known to be negative for COVID-19 allows us to reduce our overall use of PPE.
The staff at the UW Health lab have worked diligently to line up equipment, secure reagents, validate test results and work with vendors and the FDA and CDC to make sure the processes are correct.
Date Published: 04/08/2020