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Kalamazoo hopes to speed up Coronavirus testing

Flickr User HM Treasury

Kalamazoo County’s health director hopes to speed up testing for local cases of the corona virus by finding a lab that is closer to home.

Jim Rutherford says all samples now go to a state lab in Lansing, where there's a backlog. Rutherford says only a few labs in the area have the equipment necessary to do the screening for COVID-19. But he hopes one of them can be certified to test for the virus soon:




"Hospital organizations or systems like Bronson, Borgess, to get them online and private labs.)


Rutherford says the wait time may continue to get longer as the virus spreads:



"What used to be an anticipated 24-hour wait time is now three or four times that. So, that's what we're struggling with all over the country."

He says most patients with flu-like symptoms are screened for more common viruses first before COVID-19 tests are ordered. He says access to more labs would not only allow more