(07/28/2020)
Without a nationally driven plan for testing for COVID-19, problems continue, an effort left to individual states to deal with the issue.

Gov. Jim Justice and other state leaders expressed frustration Monday over how long it takes to turn over results once a coronavirus test has been conducted.

“We all know the fact that if you don’t get a report back within 10 days, you know, it’s almost like well, why do the report?” Justice said.

The lag could be seven days, said Bill Crouch, secretary of West Virginia’s Department of Health and Human Resources.

“We’re very concerned about the delay in getting results from our testing labs,” Crouch said, noting that some national labs are experiencing delays of seven to 14 days.

“Sometimes a delay of seven days, 10 days really makes it almost useless to do the test,” he said. “We have to get quick results to be able to do contact tracing.”

State Health Officer Ayne Amjad agreed: “The delay in testing is an issue.”

She said people experiencing symptoms should quarantine while they are waiting for their test results, but also acknowledged that has been a problem with some employers.

Nationally, news outlets have been reporting waits of up to two weeks for coronavirus test results.

That’s because of the sheer number of people being tested along with shortages of supplies for laboratories.

Alex Azar, the U.S. secretary of Health and Human Services, blamed states for lack of preparation to assure efficient testing turnaround.


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