Delays Continue in Processing COVID-19 Test Results

Delayed lab reports combined with delays in data entry at DHSS may present inaccurate pictures of the impact of the virus in the City of St. Louis.

July 8, 2020 | 2 min reading time

This article is 4 years old. It was published on July 8, 2020.

The City of St. Louis Department of Health (DOH) is alerting the community of continued delays at some commercial laboratories in processing COVID-19 tests results. The Department of Health has also been advised that the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services (DHSS) has a backlog of COVID-19 cases that have not been entered in its database.

Reporting delays present a barrier to preventing the spread of the virus. Positive test results trigger isolation and contact tracing, essential tools to preventing the spread of the COVID-19. Negative test results reduce and eliminate anxiety.

Delayed reporting from the laboratories combined with delays in data entry at DHSS may also present inaccurate pictures of the impact of the virus when results are finally issued and the data entry backlog is resolved. Cases not being reported in a timely manner could appear as a resurgence when it’s really just how they are being reported.

The City of St. Louis Department of Health will continue to provide updates on the status of the laboratory reporting delays and the DHSS data entry backlog. 

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