Overloaded labs struggling to keep up with COVID-19 testing demand

Posted at 5:56 AM, Jul 23, 2020
and last updated 2020-07-23 07:43:55-04

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) — More people are getting tested for COVID-19, and it's leading to longer wait times to get those results.

Many states across the South are experiencing more demands for tests, which means labs are overloaded.

In Davidson County, it can take anywhere from three to five days to get results back. For people living in Williamson County, as recently as last week, people were told it could take up to 10 days to get results.

As more labs are being overwhelmed with demands, one of the major labs, Quest Diagnostics, is working on ways to speed up the process. They're looking at a new concept called pool testing, where multiple samples are tested at once. Unfortunately, process isn’t available in Nashville right now.

Quest is also asking health care providers to prioritize testing for people who are at a higher risk of having COVID-19.

Something else to keep in mind, the three assessment centers in the Nashville area have changed their hours. They are now open on weekdays from 7 a.m. to 1 p.m.

**CNN contributed to this report.