Local man shares frustration while waiting for COVID-19 test results

Local News

LAS VEGAS (KLAS) — As more states see COVID-19 outbreaks, many across the country have reported a delay in COVID-19 test results. 8 News Now spoke with one Las Vegan who said he’s had to put his whole life on hold while waiting for an answer. 

“It’s frustrating, I just want to know,” Wade McKenzie said of his testing experience. “I went on the 4th (of July) and here I still wait.” 

McKenzie was exposed to someone with a positive case of COVID-19 and got tested nearly two weeks ago. Now, more than ten days later, he hasn’t heard a word either way. 

“I can’t go back to work until I have proof of a negative result,” McKenzie explained. “So here I sit not making any money.”

McKenzie is just one of many in Southern Nevada and across the nation experiencing longer than normal wait times. 

“There are a lot of other people out there,” he said. “That are struggling to find out if we have it or not.”

Quest Diagnostics, one of the largest testing laboratories in The United States, attributes this to a soaring demand.

Officials said they’ve doubled daily capacity to perform up to 125,000 molecular diagnostic tests a day, but the sheer volume is still slowing things down. 

Quest representatives said in a media statement that they hope to perform 150,000 molecular diagnostic tests a day by the end of July. 

“It’s really frustrating that it’s taking so long,” McKenzie said. “And then you have other people go to different labs that get their results in 24 hours.”

Regardless of the reason, McKenzie calls the significant delay a domino affect for everyone around him. 

“It’s serious, he concluded. “It’s having a big impact, it’s not just me.”

8 News Now also reached out to The Southern Nevada Health District in regards to protocols. 
A representative sent the following statement: 

“The Southern Nevada Health District recommends that anyone with symptoms of COVID-19 should self-isolate and contact a health care provider for advice if appropriate. Anyone who has been tested and is experiencing symptoms or who may have been exposed to a confirmed case and is awaiting results should self-quarantine until the results are received to ensure they don’t pass the infection to others. People who were tested at a Health District site and have a positive test result will be notified via an automated notification system and will be contacted by a case investigator. Results are generally available in 24-72 hours but can take up to seven days due to high volumes of community testing. People who were tested by their own provider or at a site that is not operated by the Health District would be notified by the provider who ordered the test.”

SNHD Spokesperson

For more information on Quest Diagnostics testing data and average wait times released this week, CLICK HERE

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