Regulators suspend Missouri nursing home COVID-19 test lab

Updated: Oct. 29, 2020 at 1:15 PM CDT
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COLUMBIA, Mo. (AP) - The federal government has closed a coronavirus testing lab in Missouri over concerns about test accuracy.

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services earlier this week suspended Gamma Healthcare’s Poplar Bluff license, and a federal judge on Wednesday ruled he won’t step in to keep the lab open.

The Poplar Bluff lab tested for coronavirus at around 2,500 nursing homes in 11 states. Those states are Arkansas, Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, Oklahoma, Tennessee and Texas.

Health officials say two testing machines at the lab operated for months producing false-negatives on over a quarter of known-positive COVID-19 samples.

Lawyers for the lab say it’s fixed the issues and should be allowed to stay open.

(Copyright 2020 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.)