Halting use of test kits purchased from China
To combat the nationwide shortage of test kits, which includes nasal swabs and tubes with liquid that preserves the collected specimens, UW Medicine's Department of Laboratory Medicine purchased those much-needed supplies from a company in China.
After learning that some supplies appeared to have been contaminated, Geoffrey Baird, the department's interim director, immediately recommended that all local and state partners cease use of these kits. As he investigated further, Baird determined that diagnostic results of COVID-19 tests obtained with those supplies were unaffected. Testing is important to determine whether someone is infected by the virus that causes COVID-19.
"I want to help more people but I can’t until we can solve this problem where we can get more test kits out to the population and to all of the various different groups who need these things," Baird said. He discusses the experience in downloadable video soundbites.