Free Zika screening in Florida leads to backlog of results

zikaTallahassee, (IANS) Getting answers for the state-funded Zika tests have become a blood-boiling wait for patients in Florida, US, as results have been taking more than a month to be processed.

Krystal Cruz, 34, who is seven months pregnant joined the residents at the Miami Beach police station on Tuesday for free Zika testing, but it will likely be weeks before she knows if she’s infected, CBC News reported.

“Is it a yes? Is it a no? What’s going on? It’s going to drive me crazy,” Cruz said. “But it is better to get tested and to know, then not to know.”

For those who can afford private lab testing, the wait is much shorter — often less than a week.

David Andrews, who heads the Pathology Lab at Miami’s Jackson Memorial Hospital, has been waiting for test results, dating back July. “Some of those we’ve been waiting for six to seven weeks,” he said.

He found out many were finished, but the paperwork had not been processed.

“We’re hoping that the vast majority of these specimens have been tested and that they’re just trying to find the papers so they can enter them into the system.”

“It is surprising, I think there’s an element of bureaucracy. Recognise everyone is trying to do their best, but I have a feeling the pieces were not coming together the way they are now that there is a lot of public attention being placed on it,” Andrews explained.

Medaram Jathara

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