Mohawk Valley Health System and the Masonic Medical Research Institute are teaming up to process MVHS COVID-19 tests at the MMRI Laboratory.

MVHS President and CEO Darlene Stromstad says the joint venture will greatly decrease the turnaround time for test results for MVHS patients and will help identify those with coronavirus faster.

Stromstad says under the new partnership, MVHS will collect the COVID-19 test sample from the patient and send it to MMRI, which will run the test and send the results back to MVHS within 24 hours.

“This partnership creates a local solution to a national problem,” said Stromstad.  “Like many hospitals across the country, we’ve had a challenge getting adequate supplies of testing materials. The very limited supply of “rapid” COVID-19 tests that produce results in 45 to 90 minutes has meant we have had to send our tests out to be run in other states, sometimes taking up to three days or longer to obtain results.

Stromstad says waiting for results has often resulted in longer hospital stays, particularly for nursing home patients, who must test negative before they can go back to the home, and in some cases has delayed elective surgeries.