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Covid-19 Testing Center

The Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine established the COVID-19 testing center at its CLIA-certified Molecular Diagnostics Laboratory with the critical leadership and financial support from the School of Medicine in March 2020 at the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemics.  It launched the first COVID-19 test on April 1st, 2020 with a collective effort involving many people inside and outside the Department.  Over the course, the initial manual operation using the CDC-developed methodology has evolved to a semi-automatic process employing commercial packages, automatic nucleic acid extraction and liquid handling apparatus.  A web-based laboratory information system has replaced excel files and is connected to electronic medical records, online registration and reporting.  These changes allow the laboratory to process from 100 samples/day to more than 3,000 samples/day with a turnaround time of less then 24 hours from collection to result.

This testing center provides diagnostic, screening and surveillance testing for SARS-CoV-2 using an RT-PCR assay for the Tulane Community as well as for outside entities in the New Orleans region.  Additionally, the Department’s Molecular Diagnostic Laboratory has validated a next generation sequencing methodology to determine sequence variants (mutants) of SARS-CoV-2, which is available for ordering.

For further information and/or testing arrangement, please refer to the following contact.

Di Tian, MD, PhD

Director, Molecular Diagnostics Laboratory

E-mail: dtian2@tulane.edu