An NHSGGC testing facility has reached the milestone of 100,000 Covid-19 tests since the beginning of the pandemic.
The West of Scotland Specialist Virology Centre (WoSSVC), based within the Queen Elizabeth University Hospital introduced the SARs COV-2 testing service at the beginning of February. Since then, 100,000 tests have been analysed and processed; 19% of which were carried out for other Health Boards within Scotland.
Arwel Williams, NHSGGC’s Director of Diagnostic and Regional Services said: “From as early as February, our virology team set about establishing a testing regime, which has now grown more than ten-fold in three months. This took a huge effort and meant the team had to adapt to different ways of working and longer hours – now operating over seven days.
“As well as processing results for our own patients, they have assisted other Boards, both in carrying out testing and assisting them to set up their own testing regimes. Due to their commitment, they have ensured that our testing capacity was greater than the demand for testing from our hospitals at every stage of the pandemic.”
Initial capacity within the WoSSVC was for 250 tests per day – which has now grown to more than 3,000 tests per day. To meet this demand, the WoSSVC have continuously introduced new equipment and processes to increase their testing capacity.
Arwel added: “The contribution of the virology team cannot be underestimated. The Covid pandemic has been the biggest challenge of our careers and they have risen to this immense task. Quite simply, this increase in testing capacity has helped keep patients and staff safe.”
The Glasgow Lighthouse lab also carries out tests and is separate from NHSGGC virology centre.