HHS details multiple COVID-19 testing statistics as national test volume surges

Aug. 4, 2020

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has announced that more than 59 million COVID-19 tests have now been completed nationally – averaging over 810,000 per day over the past seven days. Over the past month, the percentage of lab tests that were completed within three days was 45; over the last seven days, it was over 56.

According to HHS, following actions are being taken to decrease COVID-19 testing turnaround times:

·        Accelerating technology and authorizations: Quest and LabCorp – among the major commercial laboratories – have both received emergency use authorizations (EUAs) for tests using pooled samples to increase efficiency and reduce testing turnaround time.

·         Surge testing: HHS is standing up temporary federal surge testing sites in partnership with communities experiencing outbreaks. COVID-19 surge testing sites are currently operational in Baton Rouge and New Orleans, Louisiana; Bakersfield, California; and Miami, Florida.

·         Expanding capacity: HHS continuously works with commercial labs and government partners to expand COVID-19 testing capacity. LabCorp announced they had reduced the average time to deliver test results to two to three days (from specimen pickup).

·         Point-of-care (POC): HHS is sending POC tests to every nursing home in the nation. In the first four weeks of this program, 2,400 point-of-care testing machines will be sent to nursing homes along with associated tests to help anticipate outbreaks for the most vulnerable while also reducing lab capacity in the commercial lab space.

Visit HHS for more news