New software developed in Los Angeles enables medical facilities to increase the number of COVID-19 tests performed daily and reduces the turnaround time to 8 hours or less
LOS ANGELES (PRWEB) MAY 07, 2020
Safe reopening calls for testing enough people to determine which cities and states can safely recommence their activities and stay that way. Performing enough tests is one of the essential steps before a state or a business can reopen. Another requirement is that test results be returned more quickly so that those who test positive for COVID-19 can be isolated and the community spread of the virus can be stopped. According to industry experts, the longer these tests sit without a diagnosis, the less likely they are to be accurate. That could lead to tens of thousands of people believing they’ve tested negative only to be asymptomatic carriers. Analysis by the Rockefeller Foundation concluded that the U.S. should test 3 million people a week, close to the estimate of 3.2 million tests proposed by Harvard researchers and STAT.
“It’s a needle in a haystack problem. You have to do a continuous screening of people — there’s no way around it. This is the new norm,” said LigoLab’s CEO Suren Avunjan, who recently launched the TestDirectly platform, a new direct-to-consumer portal that can help solve the problem of additional testing, safe and easy collection, tracking of specimens, and the quick return of results. The software can integrate with laboratories and distribute workload and capacity based on availability and guarantee quick turnaround times as well as increase the capacity of the network to cover up to 25 percent of the nation’s testing needs.
“As of today, our network of labs has reached daily capacity of 35,000 COVID-19 tests. We are actively increasing the total capacity by introducing new labs to the network, setting up more instruments, and leveraging pooling methodology. We are targeting a daily capacity of 250,000 tests within the next 60 days,” Avunjian added.
TestDirectly facilitates safe and easy sample collecting and processing. The platform covers the entire lifecycle for drive-through processing of COVID-19 testing, increasing accessibility, and it eliminates risks of exposure for patients and healthcare providers.
The TestDirectly platform supports nationwide laboratory coverage creating a network to help load balance and increase testing capacity in an effort to assist the public’s safe return to normal activities. The platform provides full visibility into the network of participating laboratories and distributes specimens to labs based on priority and available capacity for quick turnaround time.
Additionally, TestDirectly eliminates paperwork and manual processes and enables patients to self-register, select a local collection facility, and book an appointment, all from the comfort of their computer or mobile device. Tests can be done in local drive-throughs using a blood test (antibody) or swab test (PCR). The platform ensures safety by producing a QR code that’s used at the time of collection and provides prompt notification of results as soon as the laboratory finalizes the report.
Orders received online are distributed among partner laboratories depending on their current workload. Dozens of labs are already using the software. In one case, Northwest Pathology Group entered into a high-volume partnership with state authorities in Florida and Illinois to deliver the necessary testing the two states require. The daily workload of over 18,0000 specimens from just these two accounts is split amongst the network of laboratories to meet the service-level agreement.
“The TestDirectly platform ticks every box. Having a system that is fully integrated with our laboratory information system from patients’ self-registering, scheduling, testing, and reporting, makes the direct-to-consumer market a breeze. We have been able to scale our capacity to 10,000+ COVID-19 tests per day. Ease of use and safety for both patient and lab makes this system a must-have,” said Jennifer Bull, Northwest Pathology Group’s Director of Operations.
The service is available via referrals from local general practitioners or corporations wanting to test their workforce prior to allowing them back into their office spaces, and the platform allows organizations to select a testing protocol in order to continually maintain a safe working environment.
There are plans for the TestDirectly software to be used for purposes other than COVID-19 and antibody testing in the near future, and development for new testing tracks is already underway. TestDirectly was founded by LigoLab, a Los Angeles-based provider of a laboratory operating platform that works in 100+ facilities nationwide and has to date been interfaced with 453 laboratory analytical instrument types.
LigoLab waived its instrument interface fees for client labs and has decided to waive licensing fees for implementation, hosting, and licensing of its laboratory operating platform for new laboratories that want to partner up with the company to further increase testing capacity for COVID-19. The offer to help is good through the end of June 2020. Software integration with a new lab takes anywhere from a couple of days to a week.
LigoLab Information System is a leading provider of innovative end-to-end healthcare software for laboratories, servicing 100+ facilities nationwide. As a comprehensive enterprise-grade solution, the LigoLab LIS & RCM Laboratory Operating Platform™ goes beyond the core workflow and provides all the supporting modules a laboratory needs to grow with maximum efficiency. LigoLab’s mission is to help laboratories reduce errors, and to scale their operations and revenues.
Michael Kalinowski (310-227-7503)
PR & Communications at LigoLab and TestDirectly
The TestDirectly platform ticks every box. Having a system that is fully integrated with our laboratory information system from patients’ self-registering, scheduling, testing, and reporting, makes the direct-to-consumer market a breeze.