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Page last updated on June 26th, 2020 at 03:19 pm

What is the process for testing novel coronavirus (COVID-19)?

Testing for the novel coronavirus that causes COVID-19 is currently being done by many different laboratories in Idaho, including hospital-based laboratories, the Idaho Bureau of Laboratories, and commercial and university laboratories that serve healthcare entities in Idaho.  Testing guidance for Idaho is available at https://rebound.idaho.gov/wp-content/uploads/testing-recommendations.pdf and Idaho guidance specifically for long-term care facilities and staff can be found at https://coronavirus.idaho.gov/ltc/.   

Epidemiologists at the local public health districts and the Idaho Department of Health & Welfare can help facilitate testing at Idaho Bureau of Laboratories (IBL) based on IBL testing capacity and current testing priorities, such as healthcare personnel, hospitalized patients, and residents and staff in long term care facilities.

Providers should continue to consider the many potential causes of respiratory illnesses, including influenza once influenza begins to circulate more widely during the fall and winter months.

One large commercial lab is testing samples from Idaho for novel coronavirus, and one is in the process of expanding its capacity but is not testing samples from Idaho as of March 10.

If you are a provider and need more information, contact your local public health district and your laboratory services provider.

(Updated June 26, 2020)

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