MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Researchers at the University of Minnesota are working on processing COVID-19 tests around the clock.
Dr. Patricia Ferrieri, the infectious disease laboratory director at the university’s medical school, says right now they’re capable of doing around 300 molecular tests a day but have a goal to ramp up.
On Wednesday, Gov. Walz announced that the University of Minnesota had formed a partnership with the Mayo Clinic to increase testing to up to 20,000 a day for people who are symptomatic.
The molecular tests are what actually diagnose whether or not someone has COVID-19.
Dr. Ferrieri says the biggest obstacle is the lack of adequate testing collection materials like swabs.
She believes because Minnesota is fairing better than other states we may be lower in priority for getting supplies.
“It’s hard to give you a precise mortality rate for COVID-19 because we don’t have the full numbers of people who may have been infected,” Dr. Ferrieri said.
She said with adequate testing the mortality may be around 2.5% to 3%.
The lab will follow the lead of the Governor’s office to ramp up testing.
Dr. Ferrieri said two of their tests are able to get results within 45 minutes once they are in the lab.