HCMC Sees Longer Turnaround Times in Results Due to Unprecedented Volumes in COVID-19 Testing

PARIS, TN – With the spike in COVID-19 cases along with new mandates and executive orders, more COVID-19 testing is being done across the country and is translating into longer turnaround times for results from the laboratories resulting the specimens.

The reference laboratory that HCMC currently uses provided an update this week that they continue to see unprecedented volumes, with Tuesday exceeding 12,500 undoubtedly from exposure over the holiday weekend.  Because of this, the one-day results they have historically been able to provide are now extended to 72 hours.  They continue to work on increasing capacity but due to high demand and limitations of supplies, some orders are now taking over a week to be received.

“Henry County Medical Center does not currently offer a rapid test for Covid-19 in our laboratory,” said Christy Roberson, Director of the HCMC Lab.  “When a patient presents to us with an order for Covid-19 PCR testing, specimens are collected, either nasal or nasopharyngeal swab, and sent to one of our reference labs for testing.  Turnaround time for results is dependent on the reference lab.  Due to the large increase in the number of tests being performed in our state and across the nation, current turnaround time for receipt of results ranges from 72 hours to 7 days after collection.”

If you need test results within a specific time frame and the current turnaround times do not meet that need, please contact your ordering provider for alternative testing options.

“We appreciate your patience during these unprecedented times,” said Roberson.

We encourage our community to continue to follow the recommended guidelines by the CDC, the TN Dept. of Health, and our city and county leaders.  This includes the following:

  1. Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds especially after you have been in a public place, or after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing.
  2. Avoid close contact and maintain 6 feet distance between you and others.
  3. Cover your mouth and nose with a cloth face cover when around others.
  4. Cover your coughs and sneezes.
  5. Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces daily.
  6. Monitor your health daily and be alert for symptoms and take your temperature.

Help all of us in Henry County and the region continue to stay safe and avoid a spike in COVID-19 by following the recommended guidelines because #COVIDStopsWithMe and #WearingisCaring.

If you have any questions or concerns, please contact your health care provider.  To learn more, go to our website at www.hcmc-tn.org or go to the CDC website at www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/index.html.

To view the Epicurve for Henry County, go to https://www.tn.gov/health/cedep/ncov/data/epi-curves.html  HCMC will continue to post updated information about our county and region related to COVID-19 daily on our social media sites and our website.

To learn more, go to our website at www.hcmc-tn.org.

Located in Paris, TN, Henry County Medical Center is a progressive, integrated healthcare organization committed to serving the healthcare needs of Henry County and the adjoining region.  Including a 142-bed hospital and other facilities, the medical center provides a variety of outpatient services, as well as inpatient care. Additionally, HCMC owns and operates 7 provider clinics in various specialties.  Henry County Medical Center is a county-owned and operated nonprofit institution. For more information: www.hcmc-tn.org.