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Communication process is also changing to accelerate test result notification
MU Health Care now has the ability to quickly process novel coronavirus (COVID-19) tests at its Mizzou North drive-thru site instead of sending the samples to a third-party company.
The new laboratory located within the Mizzou North building at 115 Business Loop 70 West will have capacity to process tests for nearly 1,500 patients each day. Patients will be now be notified of their test result as soon as it is processed via a message in the HealthConnect portal, typically within 24 hours.
“The onsite testing and processing facility is more convenient and efficient because we won’t have to transport specimens and keep them cold,” said Brad Myers, executive director of pharmacy and laboratory services at MU Health Care. “We have consistently returned test results to patients within 48 to 72 hours, an average that is shorter than most metro areas across the country. Now, those results will be processed and communicated even more quickly.”
Building the Mizzou North lab required collaboration across the University of Missouri campus, bringing together experts in public health, engineering and veterinary medicine. Staff at the MU College of Engineering produced test swabs, and the MU College of Veterinary Medicine contributed lab equipment and other machines.
“As demand for testing continues to increase in our area, it is important for us to create testing, processing and communication efficiencies that will help us ensure continued rapid test results,” Myers said. “We are confident that, barring any national supply chain issues, we will be able to meet the testing needs of the community in a timely fashion.”
The Mizzou North testing site is open from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. on weekdays and 8 a.m. to noon on Saturdays.
Patients experiencing mild COVID-19 symptoms, those who’ve had direct exposure to a confirmed case of COVID-19, traveled to a high risk area, or patients with certain risk factors should seek a provider’s order before getting a test at the Mizzou North drive-thru testing site. Patients who are asymptomatic and require testing prior to scheduled medical procedures will have the option to be tested within an MU Health Care lab or the drive-thru.
University of Missouri Students who have symptoms should call the Student Health Center at 573-882-7481 to be assessed by a Student Health Center registered nurse or doctor and be tested on campus.
Patients suffering severe symptoms or breathing problems should proceed to the emergency department or call 911.
For more details about these additional services and information regarding COVID-19, visit muhealth.org/coronavirus.
Please contact us with any questions or issues.