UPDATE: Equipment issue that delayed COVID-19 test results fixed

A microbiologist performs a manual extraction of the coronavirus. (Photo by Tom Wolf from Flickr)

An equipment issue at the Pathology and Laboratory Medicine COVID-19 testing lab at the London Health Sciences Centre (LHSC) that had doubled the turnaround time for results has been fixed.

Officials at the London Health Sciences Centre announced on Friday afternoon that the issues have been corrected, and the normal 24-hour turnaround for test results will resume on Monday.

“We would like to thank our community for its patience as we worked quickly and diligently to restore these critical testing instruments. COVID-19 testing is an important part of keeping our community safe,” a statement from the hospital said.

The Pathology and Laboratory Medicine COVID-19 testing lab is a joint venture of LHSC and St. Joseph’s Health Care London. Late Thursday, it was announced that the equipment issue had led to delays in processing tests from across southwestern Ontario. The number of specimens tested fell to 1,500, which is well below the 3,400 tests that are normally processed each day.