The unsung heroes of COVID-19 testing

Dr. Jen Ashton shines a spotlight on medical technologists who have performed more than 200 million tests since the pandemic began.
2:31 | 01/14/21

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Transcript for The unsung heroes of COVID-19 testing
Let's start with the number this we often do dust ash from the CDC now forecasting. Up to 477000. Deaths by early on February okay. The latest covic numbers we're talking about now from Johns Hopkins University now more than 92 point four million confirmed infections worldwide. Climbing well over 23 million right here in the US and this country is mourning now 384000. American lives a staggering number those just unimaginable. Just maybe even months ago right I know and we have more staggering numbers to get to Jen because the number of confirmed cases is now topping. 200000. Per day the number of tests run. About one point nine million I know you hasn't insights into the people. Who actually processing all of these tea exactly and I really wanted to kill the curtain back on this critical group of people who get absolutely no recognition no attention. There called the medical technologist also known as lab techs they work and the department of microbiology. Since the beginning of this pandemic you guys we have process they have processed approximately your well over 200 million coded tests. Since the beginning that's a massive amount what is their job in tail while handling these tubes in evaluating the testing protocols at their labs. Fixing machines that are not meant to or designed to be working and running. 24 hours a day and then there's the human element they are working in many cases fifteen hour shifts without days off. Burn out risk of exposure to infectious diseases including Coke at nineteen. Even Carpal Tunnel Syndrome from doing these repetitive actions. Day after day hour after hour and remember you guys there's still processing other tests other cultures for other types of infections. Test to diagnose sexually transmitted infections those things haven't stopped. Just because of the massive work they're doing for covic nineteen. In all this testing you you say this all the time all the testing are doing we shouldn't just be focused and worried about positive cases that's not the only thing to focus on rate you have to look at the denominator as as Amy said of almost two million test being run in this country every single year. And remember these tests need files they need re agents they need swabs so their supply chain issue. Those things can be ramp duct you can't manufacture. More people and these people these lab techs are literally getting zero attention they deserve massive gratitude for the work that they have done. And are continuing to dale doctor Esther thank you both.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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