FLAGSTAFF, AZ (3TV/CBS5) — Researchers at Translational Genomics Research Institute in Flagstaff (T-Gen) are now testing for the coronavirus, giving the state a boost in tracking what is now a global pandemic.
TGen North, said that his lab received federal clearance this week to begin testing and is screening about 100 samples a day
Dr. David Engenthaler, the director of TGen North, said that his lab received federal clearance this week to begin testing and is screening about 100 samples a day with the capability of ramping that up to more than 1,000 a day.
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The state health lab is capped at testing about 450 samples a day for COVID-19, but it has not received enough test kits from the federal government to run at full capacity.
“During an emergency response like this the state and public health authorities really need to gear their resources where it’s most needed,” Engenthaler said.
Increased testing, he said, will give state leaders better information about where the is and where the virus is circulating.
Nationally, the slow pace and strict limitations on who can be tested has likely masking the size and scope of the public health emergency.
After receiving a test sample, the TGen lab can determine the results in a matter of hours and then study the virus to see if it is spreading locally or is coming from another state or country.
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