DHEC Celebrates Lab Week

By Jamie Shuster

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Medical Laboratory Professionals Week is celebrated the third week of April each year by laboratory professionals around the country.  The primary focus is to bring attention to and highlight the importance of the work being done by laboratorians daily.

This national celebration gives us the opportunity to highlight the successes of DHEC’s Bureau of Laboratories (BOL), which provides diagnostic and reference laboratory services to DHEC clinics, hospitals, universities, and private providers. The BOL consists of two diagnostic divisions: the Chemistry and Microbiology Divisions.

Some of the team’s many recent accomplishments include:

  • A new condition, Severe Combined Immunodeficiency (SCID), was added to the testing panel of Newborn Screening
  • Our Newborn Screening Laboratories operate six days a week, including Saturdays and holidays
  • Our laboratory is now certified and approved to test for Ebola, Malaria, and Middle Eastern Respiratory Syndrome (MERS)

Each year, our lab team performs the following impressive number of tests and screenings, keeping South Carolinians healthy and safe:

  • 100,000 tests in support of maternal and child health programs
  • 150,000 tests for the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) and other sexually transmitted diseases
  • 5,000 tests for rabies
  • Testing for more than 90 percent of tuberculosis patients in South Carolina
  • Screenings to test all South Carolina newborns for metabolic disorders

The Bureau of Laboratories recently hosted a cookout and celebration and in honor of the team’s hard work and many accomplishments. Thank you to our entire BOL team for your continued commitment to helping keep South Carolinians healthy and safe.

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