CHICAGO (CBS) — Hundreds of people thought they had COVID-19, but it turns out a local testing lab got it wrong – and the results were even sent to the State of Illinois.
As CBS 2’s Charlie De Mar reported StarLab in Franklin Park advertises one-day turnaround COVID-19 tests. Their website even guarantees accuracy.READ MORE: CTA Red Line Trains Running With Delays After Early Morning Power Outage
But the Illinois Department of Public Health said they found out Monday that StarLab reported 325 potentially false positive COVID-19 cases the last week of November.
And just last week, StarLab had more false positive problems.
The owner points to a computer glitch while processing nearly 900 COVID tests. Internal emails reveal the glitch wasn’t detected until 189 tests were sent off as false positives.
Going back months, we have been documenting the price a false positive can have.
“I thought of the ventilator, and I started to get my affairs in order,” one woman told CBS 2 Investigator Dave Savini in July. “I thought about the patients in the hospital how they can’t see their loved ones. And I felt I would be one of them, and God knows I’m praying for them.”READ MORE: MISSING: 8-Year-Old Aubri Morgan Last Seen On Near South Side; Believed To Be With Mother Driving Chevy Impala
That woman was not diagnosed by StarLab. But she lost her job due to a false positive.
“I was scared and I stayed in the house,” she said, “and I followed the instructions. You have to stay in quarantine for 14 days.”
The IDPH said it has requested specific information about all those positive cases is working to get corrected information.
The department said it was alerted Monday by a local health department about potential false positives from StarLab, and StarLab went on to indicate 325 incorrect results for the week of Nov. 23-30.
IDPH said it does not contract with StarLab, which is an independent laboratory. The false positives do not affect any testing done at any of the state testing sites, the IDPH said.MORE NEWS: Chicago Weather: Morning Showers Tuesday; Cool Down In Effect
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