The London Health Sciences Center has passed an impressive milestone, performing a million COVID-19 tests since the pandemic started just over a year ago.
The joint venture between the Pathology and Laboratory Medicine (PaLM) team at LHSC and St. Joseph’s Health Care London began on March 18, 2020 for the first time with COVID-19 laboratory tests as part of the LHSC’s microbiology program.
The initiative, which helped expand the province’s laboratory testing system and meet the needs of the Southwest region, increased capacity and built partnerships.
“As a team, we take pride in not only the throughput we have achieved, but what it represents,” said Mike Kadour, LHSC’s chief laboratory officer.
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Through her tests, Kadour said they helped gather the information health officials and politicians need to make important health decisions for the safety of the community.
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Last year the lab increased the capacity from 50 tests per day to 3,000 and then to the current level of 10,000 COVID-19 tests per day. In addition, all positive tests were checked for questionable variants.
The one million tests in just one year are the equivalent of 200 years of normal influenza testing.
“To have made such a contribution more than a million times is particularly significant for us,” said Kadour.
As a result of the pandemic, PaLM expanded its regional cooperation to include seven public health units, operators of long-term care / retirement homes and basic providers.
“The innovation, expertise and adaptability in our teams have resulted in exceptional service to our communities during this incredibly challenging time,” said Kadour.
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