Sanford Health having problems with lab analyzer

Local News

Some patients who recently tested positive for COVID-19 are getting some unexpected news. At Monday afternoon’s news conference in Sioux Falls, Sanford Health responded to a question about some falsely reported tests.

Sanford Health COO Matt Hocks says in a statement that there were problems with a lab analyzer, which determines whether a test is positive or negative. The tests in question were performed a week ago, on October 11, 12 and 13. Since the analyzer wasn’t working right, some people may have received positive test results, even when their tests were negative.

“It was actually picked up very early that we could have some erroneous results, and that is being worked through as we speak, and communication with primary care providers to identify patients if testing is still appropriate or what we need to do,” said Dr. Mike Wilde, vice president medical officer with Sanford Health.

The analyzer was taken offline. Wilde says hundreds of tests may have been affected. If you were one of those patients, your care provider will let you know.

Hocks provided KELOLAND News with this statement:

Early last week, we discovered a performance issue with one of our lab analyzers. As a result, some patient results for COVID-19 tests from October 11-13 may have been incorrectly reported as positive. All ordering providers have been notified of the issue and are recommending patients be re-tested if clinically indicated. Sanford Health has additional testing analyzers being utilized for COVID testing while the identified analyzer remains out of service until it re-passes quality control tests.

All other COVID results reported during this time, both negative and positive, were accurate. Sanford Health has analyzed more than a quarter-million COVID-19 tests since the pandemic began this spring and remains confident in our testing.

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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