In February 2020, Christian Drosten revealed the genetic sequencing of COVID-19 and issued a warning online. Since the outbreak worldwide, over 350 gnome sequences of mutations have been identified.
Early on, The U.S. was only able to domestically manufacture about 17% of the PPE needed throughout the country per month leading to a “wild-west” situation fraught with fraud and difficulties.
A decision by the CDC to send the limited available testing kits roughly evenly throughout the U.S. seems to have resulted in a massive disconnect between testing availability and actual needs.
The evolution of technology in labs means using handheld or point of care devices, utilizing Laboratory Information Management Systems (LIMS) software, robotic racks, and pneumatic tubes.
Facilities that had previously used an established supplier for daily operations were suddenly finding themselves needing a much larger reserve of PPE supplies.
As the pandemic has worn on, testing supply deployment processes by the IRR have become more mature, and many of these hurdles have been overcome.
LIMS automates many functions that cause bottlenecks in specimen processing and testing. Eliminating manual entry speeds up overall testing with fewer errors.
A road map to pandemic resilience released by Harvard’s Safra Center for Ethics, suggests we need to deliver 5 million tests daily to safely reopen the economy.
When PPE came on the market, it was often gone within minutes or hours. Organizations hired staff to do nothing but scour the internet looking for opportunities.