Since January 2020, WHO has emphasized the importance of diagnostic testing as part of a comprehensive strategy to control COVID-19. This is because COVID-19 testing is imperative in helping healthcare providers quickly identify exposed and infected patients. So far, according to CDC’s COVID Data Tracker website, about 75,302,383 people have tested positive for a SARS-CoV-2 variant. Out of this number, around 888,784 people have died from it. Many challenges have resulted from COVID 19, such as homelessness and lack of normal social interactions, especially among the elderly.
Northshore Clinical Labs is a high-capacity lab in Chicago, Illinois, working hard to develop and offer test services that yield highly accurate and quality results. They do this by combining a molecular test for helping with COVID-19 diagnosis and a serology test to help indicate possible COVID-19 exposure. Averagely, Northshore Clinical Lab performs about 20,000 COVID-19 tests each day. The lab carries out tests 24/7 thanks to its efficient PCR and blood tests and current technology.
The lab does not only carry out tests. It has partnered with the community to reduce stress and fear among people. Some of the social places in the community that Northshore Clinical Lab has partnered with include:
- Community clinics
- Nursing homes
- Summer camps
- Homelessness organizations
Another thing that helps Northshore Clinical Labs perform exceptionally well is it’s great relationship with the Illinois Department of Health and other health departments. This relationship leads to high-quality COVID and non-COVID testing and a great relationship with customers.
In addition to offering these COVID 19 testing services Northshore Clinical Labs has attempted to do as much as possible to impact the country positively during the COVID-19 pandemic. While providing standard testing services, they are also focused on helping to alleviate some of the issues that come with COVID19 through on-site support, charitable fundraising, and donations. Northshore Clinical Labs does this by supporting various communities. Some of the areas that it focuses on include:
According to an estimate by the National Alliance to End homelessness, about 580,466 people experienced homelessness in 2020 following the pandemic. Out of these people, 70% were individuals, and the rest were persons with families that also included children. This situation prompted Northshore Clinical Labs to take action and become the lead sponsor of the ShowerUp program in Chicago. The ShowerUp program is a charitable organization founded by a couple who had prior experience working with the homeless community. It provides people who are currently experiencing homelessness with shower kits and hygiene resources through mobile units in 3 areas within Chicago. Also, it serves the homeless in Huntsville, Alabama, Wichita, Kansas, and Nashville, Tennessee.
In November 2021 alone, Northshore Clinical Labs raised $25,000 as it aimed to help ShowerUp expand its local and international reach with ongoing sponsorship. Northshore Clinical Labs plans to continue to support this program and have a positive impact on the community. It aims not only to be a leader in pathology services, molecular diagnostics, and immunology testing across the nation but also as a leader in charitable pursuit.
The Covid-19 pandemic has greatly limited people’s social interactions by forcing them to stay home. Though people from all age groups have been impacted, children have been the most affected. They had to switch to online classes instead of physical ones in school and stay away from family members and friends.
COVID 19 has also limited their recreational activities, which is essential in social interaction and necessary for their growth and development. One way that children used to have a chance to engage in recreational activities is by going to summer camps. However, with COVID, these summer camps were not advisable as they involved social activities that could put children and their families at risk.
In the summer of 2021, Northshore Clinical Labs came in to help and provided testing services for all staff and campers. Teams from NorthShore Clinical Labs took PPE and testing supplies to each location and provided numerous PCR tests in less than 18 hours. Children could now freely participate in summer camps without fear or stress. So far, NorthShore Clinical Labs has supported over 70 summer camps through 2021 and plans to continue in 2022.
Nursing Homes and Other Care Facilities
The COVID-19 pandemic has greatly impacted nursing homes and other care facilities due to numerous outbreaks reported in care facilities worldwide. These outbreaks are due to the people in care facilities’ advanced age and many underlying diseases. The COVID 19 outbreak in nursing homes and other facilities affects everyone in the facility, including the residents, visitors, and caregivers.
Since the onset of the pandemic, Northshore Clinical Labs has been very helpful in supporting nursing homes, independent living, and assisted living facilities. It has done this by sending experts to locations like Greek American Rehabilitation and Care Center, The Springs of Monarch Landing to test residents, Bridgeview Healthcare Center, Three Crowns Park, and Westminster Place. Additionally, Northshore Clinical Labs has helped by supporting vaccine events at many senior locations and helped pharmacy vaccine partners by providing staff to support vaccine events.
Charter and Public Schools
Though COVID 19 has forced the mode of education delivery in schools across the country to be online, it is not the most effective form of education delivery. According to experts, many benefits come with receiving education within an institution. Among these benefits is social interaction which can only occur in a formal public or private scholastic setting.
In March 2021, Northshore Clinical Labs started providing supportive COVID-19 testing services for the Learn Charter School Network and other schools in the area. This made it possible for children to receive on-site education. Now, Learn Charter, a 20-year-old network, has managed to offer on-site education to more than 4,000 students in Chicago, Washington DC, North Chicago, and Waukegan.
When Northshore Clinical Labs team members arrive at any given station, they offer “White Glove Service.” This service involves the team wearing full PPE gear and collecting test samples. Once the tests are processed, they return the results to the school. Children that are found to be positive continue with their studies. However, they have to follow the necessary measures such as wearing masks at all times.
Northshore Clinical Labs plans to continue to provide these and other supportive services to agencies, businesses and organizations through the rest of 2022 with hopes to increase their positive impact on communities both as a leader in medical testing and through their charitable pursuits. They plan to continue testing services and provide new and innovative ways to guarantee fast, accurate results no matter the location, event or type of test.