Surge in COVID-19 Cases Highlights Greater Need for PCR Testing
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: August 13, 2021
Erin Waller, Sr. Director of Marketing
HealthTrackRx, a PCR-based infectious disease laboratory, highlights greater need for polymerase chain reaction (PCR) testing during the rapid acceleration of COVID-19 cases across the United States.
Denton, TX, August 13, 2021—COVID-19 cases are on the rise in nearly 90% of counties across the United States, with most viral outbreaks occurring in parts of the country that maintain low COVID-19 vaccination coverage. In the month of July alone, the country has seen an increase in new cases at the fastest pace since last winter, marking the start of the latest wave of infections.
The increase in COVID-19 outbreaks is largely due to the emergence of a new, much stronger, variant. The B.1.617.2 (Delta) variant is now the most dominant variant in the United States and is a highly contagious SARS-CoV-2 viral strain. Today, the Delta variant makes up an estimated 83.2% of recent U.S. COVID-19 cases, and HealthTrackRx, the nation’s leading PCR-based infectious disease laboratory, has documented a corresponding increase in its volume of COVID-19 PCR testing performed. “The last week of July, we saw laboratory COVID-19 positivity rates increase from 1% to 8.5%,” said Jay Reddy, PhD, VP of Lab Operations for HealthTrackRx. “This has been the sharpest increase in positivity rates we have seen thus far, likely due to the increased transmission rate of the Delta variant. Even more telling, the urgent care, pediatric and family practice specialties all have positivity rates of over 10%. This trend will continue, as the Delta variant has spread over the entire southeastern United States and will move across the entire country as superspreader events continue to occur.”
With rising infection rates, a rapid, accurate diagnosis is critical. HealthTrackRx has innovated polymerase chain reaction (PCR) testing for COVID-19, for both swab and saliva samples, returning results rapidly, within 24 hours of sample receipt. This quick turnaround time enables practitioners to make more informed, timely decisions.
“Largely attributed to the Delta variant, the U.S. is reporting an average of about 43,700 new cases per day over the last week, which is nearly three times as high as case levels two weeks ago,” said Dr. Ravina Kullar, PharmD, MPH, FIDSA, Consultant for HealthTrackRx. “The Delta variant is highly contagious, as those infected with the Delta variant can carry up to 1,000 times more virus in their nasal passages than those infected with the original Wuhan strain. Timely detection of SARS-COV-2, with PCR and antibody testing, to prevent transmission and for surveillance purposes, respectively, is critical during these unprecedented times.”
PCR-based molecular diagnosis is considered the “gold standard” of laboratory-based testing for infectious diseases such as COVID-19. PCR testing allows healthcare providers to pinpoint pathogenic causes of illness, whether combating the misprescribing of antibiotics for nonbacterial causes or providing doctors with insight into what treatment might work best. Since the beginning of the pandemic, HealthTrackRx has made significant technological strides to make testing more effective, accurate and accessible for everyone. With HealthTrackRx, providers can pre-register COVID-19 patients online and access laboratory test results within 24 hours.
As the nation’s premier PCR laboratory and nationwide COVID-19 experts, HealthTrackRx understands how essential it is to provide access to PCR-based COVID-19 testing. With the continued acceleration of COVID-19 cases across the United States, PCR testing is critical for accurate diagnoses enabling fast, effective treatment.
About HealthTrackRx: HealthTrackRx is the nation’s leading PCR-based infectious disease laboratory, advancing healthcare through decentralized patient-directed testing, large-scale surveillance pathogen testing, antimicrobial stewardship, and value-based care programs. In a global environment threatened by growing antimicrobial resistance, rapid diagnoses matter. HealthTrackRx sets the pace for industry-leading laboratory operations through unparalleled turnaround time, yielding insights that mobilize accurate clinical decisions. With over 20 years in the clinical laboratory industry, HealthTrackRx provides services to over 10,000 clinicians nationwide.
For more information, visit HealthTrackRx at healthtrackrx.com and follow on LinkedIn