UNC Health begins coronavirus testing

Orange County News

CHAPEL HILL, N.C. (WNCN) – Clinical microbiology experts at the UNC Medical Center and UNC School of Medicine in Chapel Hill have developed a coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) diagnostic test based on the World Health Organization (WHO) assay.

It is now in use to conduct COVID-19 testing for UNC Health patients in accordance with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) guidance for individuals who meet criteria set by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC).

Officials say the testing will help ease demand as many other positive cases of the virus arise.

The UNC test will initially be available only for inpatients at UNC Medical Center, UNC REX Hospital and UNC Health affiliate hospitals across North Carolina as well as a select number of UNC Health clinic locations.

Use of this test by UNC Health entities will allow for more testing capacity at the state health department and LabCorp in North Carolina.

“Quickly creating and validating tests for emerging pathogens has always been part of my passion and commitment, ever since I was a fellow here during SARS. We have developed a high-quality test, we have the infrastructure to roll it out, and are ready to help the people of our state,” said Dr. Melissa Miller, director of the Clinical Microbiology and Molecular Microbiology Labs at the UNC Medical Center.

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