Tributes to staff as Forth Valley microbiology team delivers 180,000 COVID test results
The microbiology department at Forth Valley Royal Hospital has recorded an impressive response in the ongoing fight against Covid-19.
Since the pandemic began, it has processed more than 186,000 Covid-19 tests from local hospitals, healthcare staff and care homes and, more recently, from prisons in the Forth Valley area.
With result reporting exceeding an outstanding 95% turnaround time, Elisabeth Kilgour, NHS Forth Valley’s microbiology laboratory manager, paid tribute to the commitment shown by department staff.
She said: “Staff have gone above and beyond with increased shift patterns, often working until late into the night, to deliver Covid-19 results for local patients.
“I am very proud of all that the laboratory staff has, as a team, achieved so far and will continue to deliver over the winter months as a key part of the health and care team.”
To help speed up results, a satellite laboratory was set up last November on the ground floor of the hospital close to the emergency department, to deliver rapid results for patients who had to be quickly admitted to hospital.
This required a new skill set for the excellent team of local staff - mainly nursing students, healthcare support workers and biomedical science students - who were trained to provide 24/7 cover.
In addition to Covid-19 testing, microbiology has also been dealing with all of the routine diagnostic testing which has now seen a return to pre-pandemic levels.
In 2020/21 more than 277,000 samples were tested by the department in Forth Valley Royal Hospital.