Rapid, Real-Time Diagnostic Testing Now Available for Hospitalized Patients
MidMichigan Health has announced the availability of rapid, diagnostic COVID-19 PCR (Polymerase Chain Reaction) testing for hospitalized patients at MidMichigan Medical Centers in Alpena, Clare, Gladwin, Gratiot, Midland, Mt. Pleasant and West Branch.
“During the validation process for the testing, our staff verified the quality, reliability and consistency of results before tests were reported on patients,” said Cindy Fillmore, laboratory director, MidMichigan Health. “The ability to test in-house for our entire health system is a great relief. With this test, results can be available to the health care provider in as little as one hour of the specimen arriving in the laboratory.”
MidMichigan expects to increase in-house capacity over the next two weeks and will continue to work with the Michigan Medicine Laboratory (MLabs) to supplement testing. These test results are available within 24 hours.
For the safety of all, MidMichigan Health reminds its communities:
- If you feel sick and have COVID-19 symptoms of cough, shortness of breath or difficulty breathing, fever, chills, repeated shaking with chills, muscle pain, headache, sore throat and new loss of taste or smell, please call ahead before you go to a doctor’s office or emergency room.
- Please avoid contact with others and do not travel while sick.
- If you are in need of in-person medical services, please plan to arrive to MidMichigan facilities with cloth face coverings, such as a cloth mask that covers the mouth and nose, a scarf or a bandana. If you do not have one, you will be provided one. The use of the MidMichigan’s Virtual Health Clinic rather than an in-person visit is also strongly encouraged.
- Help prevent the spread of this virus through social distancing and proper hygiene, such as hand washing and not touching our faces.
As a service to the community, MidMichigan Health has also published a COVID-19 informational hotline with a reminder of CDC guidelines and recommendations. Staff is also available to help answer community questions Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. The hotline can be reached toll-free at (800) 445-7356 or (989) 794-7600.