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South Georgia Medical Center will soon roll out in-hospital rapid COVID-19 testing

Posted at 12:54 PM, Apr 10, 2020
and last updated 2020-04-10 12:54:04-04

VALDOSTA, GA. (WTXL) — South Georgia Medical Center says its received its initial supply of COVID-19 testing kits and, beginning next week, will be able to get test results back in less than two hours.

SGMC has a state-of-the-art full service lab and operates both the Cepheid and BioFire Molecular Diagnostic Testing platforms, both of which have been approved by the FDA for COVID-19 testing

Cepheid testing kits arrived Friday and validation of the testing system is underway. Once that happens, the system will be ready for use.

"In-hospital testing capability is a game-changer for health care systems because of the rapid turn around and accelerated clinical decision making," said SGMC Chief Medical Officer Brian Dawson. "The rapid result helps our physicians admit patients to appropriate units quicker. Additionally, patients who no longer need inpatient care can be discharged sooner," he said.

The in hospital testing will be initially performed on select inpatients only until more testing kits are made available.

SGMC has already established a partnership with Mayo Clinic that allows for testing turnaround within 48 hours. That service will continue for all other patients tested thorough its laboratory service.