1,000 COVID-19 test kits recalled from Wenatchee Valley health agency

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EAST WENATCHEE — One thousand COVID-19 test kits delivered to the Chelan-Douglas Health District last week had to be returned as part of a statewide recall.

On Saturday the state Department of Health pulled back a total of 12,000 new kits that had been sent out to local health districts, because of a possible defect in the viral transport medium — the fluid that preserves a patient’s sample on the way to the lab.

Veronica Farias, public information officer for the Chelan-Douglas Health District, said the East Wenatchee-based agency received 1,000 kits last week from the suspect batch. All had to be turned over in the recall, she said.

State health officials said they noted discoloration in the vials of VTM, which led them to recall the kit materials “out of an abundance of caution.” They say there’s no risk to patients who may have undergone tests using the suspect VTM.

Confluence Health also conducts coronavirus testing in its facilities and at drive-through sites in Wenatchee and Omak. Spokesman Andrew Canning says Confluence it was not affected by the recall.

The kits were donated to the state by Lingen Precision Medical Products based in Shanghai, China. A large shipment of new testing supplies is expected to arrive in Washington this week.