Wagga lab prioritizes three groups as COVID system hits cruising speed | Daily announcer


Every day in Wagga, more people are tested for COVID-19 than the city’s government lab can handle, with samples being sent further away for analysis in an attempt to meet demand. The Wagga lab has the capacity to process 350 tests per day, a spokesperson for NSW Health Pathology confirmed, and is now prioritizing hospital emergency department patients, inpatients and healthcare workers as it is inundated with tests. Murrumbidgee Local Health District [MLHD] Wagga Showground and Murray Street clinics collected an average of 560 to 600 tests per day last week. Some community members are in their second week of waiting for a result, with a woman saying she received a call from a lab saying she received her sample a week later, but still no results eight days after a test. test. In other news, NSW Health Pathology could not confirm the current turnaround in tests collected at Wagga, which the MLHD says could take four or five days. “Our time to test results has increased due to the Omicron outbreak, record demand for testing and the increase in positive cases,” she said. Nearly 400 samples were taken on Wednesday and Thursday even as the city was inundated with heavy storms, causing the Showground site to be closed early for security reasons. More than 100 tests had been performed when it closed, said Tina Curry of MLHD’s COVID response team. “For the safety of staff and community members, we closed the clinic by car early,” Ms. Curry said. “Our Showground staff moved to the Murray Street testing clinic and everyone lined up was redirected to Murray Street to have their tests completed. NSW Health Pathology has acknowledged that samples of community concerns are being sent out of town as it addresses the overwhelming scale of the tests. “Omicron’s push and the significant increase in positive cases means pooling of samples, which improves lead times to results, is no longer an option and laboratories must now test each sample individually,” said declared the spokesperson. “Our Wagga lab is sending samples to Westmead to help meet increased demand for our statewide lab network.” This has also happened before during the pandemic, they confirmed. Our journalists work hard to provide local and up-to-date news to the community. Here’s how you can continue to access our trusted content: