Coronavirus
The Centro Médico ABC Observatorio is one of the private hospitals that conduct Covid-19 tests. The Centro Médico ABC Observatorio is one of the private hospitals that conduct Covid-19 tests.

Just 8 private labs can do virus tests, but getting results takes time

One lab had not provided results of a Covid-19 test two weeks after administering it

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Eight private laboratories have been approved by health authorities to carry out Covid-19 tests but there is no guarantee that they will provide the results swiftly.

The Health Ministry published a list on Wednesday of the labs certified to test people for the novel coronavirus that originated in Wuhan, China, late last year.

They are Olarte y Akle (Mexico City); Laboratorios Lister (Tamaulipas, San Luis Potosí, Veracruz); Laboratorios Biomédicos de Mérida (Yucatán); Hospital Ángeles Interlomas (México state); Labiomola; Hospital Español; Médica Sur; and Centro Médico ABC Observatorio (last four are all in Mexico City).

Two people who decided to get tested for Covid-19 by a private laboratory are Jorge Aguilar and Esteban Maqueo, friends who returned to Mexico on March 13 from Spain, where there are more than 50,000 confirmed coronavirus cases.

The two men said that they first attempted to find out information about where they could get tested by calling the Health Ministry’s Covid-19 hotline. However, they were unable to get through.

On the same day that he returned from Spain, Aguilar went to the National Institute of Respiratory Diseases (INER) in southern Mexico City to seek treatment for his coronavirus-like symptoms and to get tested.

He said that after three hours he was told that he was fine and that no Covid-19 tests were conducted at INER in any case.

Unhappy with the situation, Aguilar decided to get tested at the ABC medical center, where he paid 3,000 pesos (US $130) for the care he received in the emergency section and 1,500 pesos for the test itself.

The next day, March 14, Maqueo was also tested for Covid-19 at the same hospital. Both men were told that their results would be available in 72 hours but almost two weeks later neither has been informed whether he tested positive or negative, the newspaper Reforma reported.

Maqueo said he was told that his sample would be sent to the Health Ministry’s epidemiology department to determine whether he had been infected with Covid-19 and that it, in turn, would advise the ABC hospital of the result.

He said in a radio interview that as he didn’t know whether he had coronavirus or not, he went into isolation to avoid any possibility of infecting his wife and four young children.

Maqueo, a lawyer, has launched legal action against the federal government both for failing to provide Covid-19 testing at INER and not picking up the phone when he called the Health Ministry hotline. He said that he decided to sue the government “because we have the right to complete medical care.”

Source: Reforma (sp) 

Coronavirus testing facilities

Epidemiological laboratories

  • Instituto Nacional de Enfermedades Respiratorias
  • Instituto Nacional de Ciencias Médicas y Nutrición “Salvador Zubirán”
  • Hospital General de México
  • Hospital 20 de noviembre (ISSSTE)
  • Laboratorio Central de Epidemiología, CMN La Raza (IMSS)

Private laboratories

  • Centro Médico ABC, Campus Observatorio
  • Hospital Ángeles Interlomas
  • Olarte y Akle, Bacteriólogos
  • Laboratorios Lister 
  • Laboratorios Biomédicos de Mérida 
  • LABIOMOLA
  • Hospital Español de la Ciudad de México
  • Médica Sur

Research laboratories

  • Centro de Investigación en Ciencias de la Salud y Biomedicina (CICSaB), Universidad Autónoma de San Luis Potosí
  • Departamento de Genética y Fisiología Molecular del Instituto de Biotecnología (IBT) de la Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México (UNAM)

Public hospitals

  • Hospital Infantil de México Federico Gómez

IMSS laboratories

  • Laboratorio de Apoyo a la Vigilancia Epidemiológica del Centro de Investigación   Biomédica de Occidente (CIBO), Guadalajara, Jalisco
  • Laboratorio de Apoyo a la Vigilancia Epidemiológica del Centro de Investigación Biomédica del Noreste (CIBIN), Monterrey, Nuevo León
  • Laboratorio de Apoyo a la Vigilancia Epidemiológica de la Unidad Médica de Alta Especialidad en Yucatán (UIMY)

State public health laboratories

  • Laboratorio Estatal de Salud Pública de Aguascalientes
  • Laboratorio Estatal de Salud Pública de Baja California
  • Laboratorio Estatal de Salud Pública de Baja California Sur
  • Laboratorio Estatal de Salud Pública de Campeche
  • Laboratorio Estatal de Salud Pública de Ciudad de México
  • Laboratorio Estatal de Salud Pública de Chiapas
  • Laboratorio Estatal de Salud Pública de Chihuahua
  • Laboratorio Estatal de Salud Pública de Coahuila
  • Laboratorio Estatal de Salud Pública de Colima
  • Laboratorio Estatal de Salud Pública de Durango
  • Laboratorio Estatal de Salud Pública de Estado de México
  • Laboratorio Estatal de Salud Pública de Guanajuato
  • Laboratorio Estatal de Salud Pública de Guerrero
  • Laboratorio Estatal de Salud Pública de Hidalgo
  • Laboratorio Estatal de Salud Pública de Jalisco
  • Laboratorio Estatal de Salud Pública de Michoacán
  • Laboratorio Estatal de Salud Pública de Morelos
  • Laboratorio Estatal de Salud Pública de Nayarit
  • Laboratorio Estatal de Salud Pública de Nuevo León
  • Laboratorio Estatal de Salud Pública de Oaxaca
  • Laboratorio Estatal de Salud Pública de Puebla
  • Laboratorio Estatal de Salud Pública de Querétaro
  • Laboratorio Estatal de Salud Pública de Quintana Roo
  • Laboratorio Estatal de Salud Pública de San Luis Potosí
  • Laboratorio Estatal de Salud Pública de Sinaloa
  • Laboratorio Estatal de Salud Pública de Sonora
  • Laboratorio Estatal de Salud Pública de Tabasco
  • Laboratorio Estatal de Salud Pública de Tamaulipas
  • Laboratorio Estatal de Salud Pública de Tlaxcala
  • Laboratorio Estatal de Salud Pública de Veracruz
  • Laboratorio Estatal de Salud Pública de Yucatán
  • Laboratorio Estatal de Salud Pública de Zacatecas

Information provided by the federal Ministry of Health

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