ARIZONA NEWS

Commercial lab testing for coronavirus begins in Arizona

Mar 18, 2020, 4:25 AM | Updated: 9:18 am
(AP Photo/Ted S. Warren)...
(AP Photo/Ted S. Warren)
(AP Photo/Ted S. Warren)

PHOENIX — Commercial labs have begun testing for the coronavirus in Arizona.

The Arizona State Public Health Laboratory is leading testing for COVID-19 across the state, with a capacity to test up to 450 people each day. But commercial testing has now started as well, including by the Mayo Clinic.

In a statement sent to KTAR News 92.3 FM, Mayo Clinic said it has set up “a mobile unit to collect samples for testing of our highly vulnerable Mayo Clinic patient population.”

“We are also supporting other providers in the Valley, sharing what we have learned, as they look to open their own alternative testing locations,” Mayo added in the statement.

The Translational Genomics Research Institute, or TGen, has also begun testing for COVID-19.

“Last week and this week we’ve been testing at the level of about 200 capacity per day,” Jeffrey Trent, president and research director for TGen, said at a press conference Monday. “By the end of next week that’ll change to about 1,000 a day.”

Last week, Sonora Quest Laboratories in collaboration with parent company Quest Diagnostics began testing samples of respiratory specimens for the the coronavirus. Sonora Quest is only testing samples sent to them by medical providers, including hospitals and doctor’s offices, and is not providing the testing at its patient service centers.

Christina Noble, chief customer officer at Sonora Quest Laboratories, said they have completed about 800 tests for the coronavirus so far and the typical turnaround time for results is 3-5 days from the time the specimen is collected.

“That I think is very positive considering the fact that we just started offering this service here last week,” she said.

Noble added a handful of their tests have resulted in positive cases of COVID-19.

There Arizona Department of Public Health on Tuesday reported there had been 20 coronavirus cases in the state.

Dr. Rebecca Sunenshine, medical director for disease control for Maricopa County Public Health, said on Monday she expects to see those numbers “increasingly rapidly” this week and the coming weeks as more commercial laboratory tests become available.

Arizona News

Rain hits the East Valley early Sunday, Sept. 26, near US 60 and Val Vista Drive. (ADOT freeway cam...
KTAR.com

East Valley, Phoenix hit by more rain, thunderstorms as monsoon season continues

More rain fell across the East Valley and parts of the Phoenix metro area Sunday morning, continuing one of the better monsoon seasons in Arizona's recent history.
11 hours ago
A certified medical assistant prepares doses of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine at a vaccination center...
KTAR.com

Arizona reports 2,579 new COVID-19 cases, 6 more deaths Sunday

Arizona health officials on Sunday reported 2,579 new COVID-19 cases and six additional deaths from the disease.
11 hours ago
(Cave Creek Museum Photo)...
KTAR.com

Cave Creek Museum to kick off 2021-2022 season this October

The Cave Creek Museum is set to kick off the 2021-2022 season this October with new collections, exhibits and special events, officials announced.
11 hours ago
(Photo courtesy of the city of Glendale)...
SuElen Rivera

Downtown Glendale launches mobile app to navigate city, benefit merchants

The Glendale Chamber of Commerce on Thursday launched a mobile app intended to help visitors in Downtown Glendale navigate around shops and merchants promote their products.
11 hours ago
Phoenix Fire Department photo...
KTAR.com

Firefighters rescue injured hiker on South Mountain in helicopter

A man who fell six feet during his hike on South Mountain got transported via a helicopter to a local ambulance.
1 day ago
Near 12th Street and Northern Avenue, Phoenix. (Twitter Photo/@Crossfire923)...
SuElen Rivera

Parts of Valley sees light showers, more chances of rain this weekend

As monsoon season wraps up, parts of the Valley received some rain Friday evening heading into the weekend.
1 day ago
Commercial lab testing for coronavirus begins in Arizona