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Johnson County Hospital Says It’s Largely Unaffected By COVID-19 Testing Problems Announced By Its Corporate Parent

051820_AdventHealth Shawnee Mission MC1.JPG_dan margolies
Dan Margolies
AdventHealth Shawnee Mission was formerly known as Shawnee Mission Medical Center.

AdventHealth Shawnee Mission uses a local lab in Lenexa, Kansas, as well as its own in-house facilities to conduct most of its COVID-19 testing.

AdventHealth Shawnee Mission says it’s largely unaffected by its parent company’s announcement that more than 35,000 COVID-19 tests the company had ordered were unreliable.

AdventHealth of Alatamonte Springs, Florida, said over the weekend that the majority of the questionable tests, performed by a third-party lab, had been conducted in Florida.

AdventHealth Shawnee Mission, formerly known as Shawnee Mission Medical Center, has been testing all of its employees for COVID-19 and sent some samples to the lab in question, according to hospital spokeswoman Morgan Shandler.

“But we were able to divert most of them to a local lab once these issues started to be apparent,” she said.

Although AdventHealth did not name the lab that performed the unreliable tests, news reports in Texas have since identified it as MicroGen DX in Lubbock, Texas.

The CEO of the lab, Rick Martin, blamed the federal government for the testing problems in an interview over the weekend.

The government basically has taken control of inventories of lab supplies,” Martin told the ABC affiliate in Orlando, Florida.

AdventHealth Shawnee Mission uses a lab in Lenexa, Kansas, as well as its own in-house facilities to conduct most of its COVID-19 testing.

Shandler said admitted patients, women in labor and symptomatic emergency patients are tested in-house. The hospital also has a drive-through testing site at its College Boulevard location for pre-surgery patients, ourpatients, symptomatic employees and employees who have been exposed to the virus. The employee drive-through tests are handled by the Lenexa lab, MAWD Pathology Group, Shandler said.

“Originally they were supposed to go to this lab in Texas, but MAWD was able to accommodate us,” she said.

The Texas lab was at the center of another controversy last month when it told the STAT website that it did not require FDA approval for an at-home test it was marketing. The tests let customers collect saliva samples at home.

The FDA, however, said the tests did require its authorization.

“FDA has not authorized any Covid-19 tests for home use, including home collection,” an FDA spokesman told STAT. “Any tests that are intended to be used completely at home or have a sample collected at home and sent for analysis would need authorization by the agency.”

AdventHealth is one of the biggest non-profit health care systems in the country. It is affiliated with the Seventh-day Adventist Church and operates more than 45 hospitals in nine states as well as hundreds of outpatient clinics, skilled nursing homes, home health agencies and hospices.

Dan Margolies has been a reporter for the Kansas City Business Journal, The Kansas City Star, and KCUR Public Radio. He retired as a reporter in December 2022 after a 37-year journalism career.
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