Sonora Quest collaborates with state and healthcare leaders to expand COVID-19 testing in AZ

July 14, 2020

Arizona Governor Doug Ducey has announced a strategic collaboration with Sonora Quest Laboratories, the Arizona Department of Health Services (ADHS) and PerkinElmer, Inc., with one goal: to expand COVID-19 testing in Arizona. The collaboration will support the strategic plan to catapult Sonora Quest’s COVID-19 diagnostic testing capacity in a material way to meet and exceed the rising demand in Arizona.

“This partnership will enable Arizona to continue rapidly expanding testing across the state, helping ensure all Arizonans have access to affordable, available testing with speedy turnaround of results,” said Governor Ducey. “I’m grateful to Sonora Quest Laboratories, PerkinElmer and the Arizona Department of Health Services for their innovative solutions to help protect the health and safety of Arizonans."

Through this collaboration, the State of Arizona and Arizona Department of Health Services are providing Sonora Quest Laboratories $2 million toward the purchase of new processing equipment. Sonora Quest continues to be committed to investing time and resources for community testing and is contributing an additional $6 million toward the expansion to increase access to health care for Arizonans.

Sonora Quest expects to reach the capacity to perform up to 35,000 diagnostic tests per day by the end of July, and up to 60,000 tests per day by the end of August. The dedicated project team at Sonora Quest will be working 24 hours a day to install, validate and deploy the new production lines, which will include chemagic 360 instruments, JANUS G3 Primary Sample Reformatters and PCR+ Workstations, to automate PerkinElmer’s RNA extraction and RT-PCR testing. The breadth of PerkinElmer’s total workflow solutions will enable Sonora Quest to rapidly process samples at higher volumes, ultimately helping decrease turnaround time in testing.

“The goal is to have test results available within 24 hours for anyone tested,” said David A. Dexter, President & CEO, Sonora Quest Laboratories. “I wish to express my sincere thanks and appreciation to Dr. Cara Christ, Director of ADHS, and PerkinElmer for supporting Sonora Quest. Together, we are making a significant difference in the Arizona healthcare community to provide ample testing throughout this pandemic.”

“Despite the recent resurgence of COVID-19 cases in the United States and some testing locations experiencing capacity shortfalls, PerkinElmer has complete SARS-CoV-2 testing solutions available and ready for delivery. We are teaming with Sonora Quest to meet their increased testing volume requirements and will continue to build capacity to support broad-based testing globally,” said Masoud Toloue., Ph.D., Vice President & General Manager, Diagnostics, PerkinElmer.

Sonora Quest’s priority remains the health and safety of all the patients and communities they serve. These efforts continue to build upon outreach and actions to expand testing for all Arizonans, including the most vulnerable and underserved populations.

“We are excited to partner with Sonora Quest to expand COVID-19 testing in Arizona,” said Dr. Cara Christ, ADHS director. “Since the start of the pandemic, ADHS has worked with Sonora Quest and several other private laboratories across Arizona to increase access to testing and laboratory capacity. We will continue to work with all of our lab partners to find ways to make testing more available to everyone in our state.”

Patients who believe they may have active COVID-19 are strongly encouraged to contact their healthcare provider or locate an Arizona Testing Blitz site for sample collection at Patients suspected of having or confirmed to have active COVID-19 infection or disease should not visit a Sonora Quest Patient Service Center. Sonora Quest Patient Service Centers do not offer collection for diagnostic COVID-19 testing.

The collaboration between Sonora Quest and PerkinElmer is an expansion of its existing relationship, in which EUROIMMUN, a PerkinElmer company, provides tests to support Sonora Quest’s antibody testing.

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