Minnesota COVID-19 tests flown to New Jersey due to 'disruption'

All COVID-19 samples from Minnesota Department of Health community testing sites are currently being flown to New Jersey for processing due to an "unexpected disruption" at the Oakdale, Minnesota processing facility.

The processing disruption and interim plan was confirmed by Vault Health on Monday morning.

"Vault provides sample collection and customer care services for the tests used at MDH community sites, which are processed by IBX," Vault Health said in a statement. "Typically, the tests are sent to IBX's lab location in Oakdale. However, this weekend, IBX informed us there was an unexpected disruption in sample processing. While they investigate the problem, we are working to ensure quick results for all impacted Minnesotans."

Minnesota patients with impacted tests from Saturday, Oct. 16 will have results by Monday evening, Oct. 18. Impacted tests were flown to the IBX lab in New Jersey on Sunday. 

"We have communicated this to patients, along with our apologies for the delay," Vault spokesperson Kate Brickman told FOX 9. "We know delayed test results can have big impacts on people’s lives."

 All Minnesota COVID-19 test samples will continue to be flown to the New Jersey lab for processing until the problem at the Oakdale lab is resolved. 

"We don’t expect this to dramatically increase the time needed for test results, but we will continue to closely monitor the situation," Brickman said.

Minnesota's new COVID-19 plan

Last week, Gov. Tim Walz laid out a new COVID-19 action plan putting the Minnesota National Guard on alert and increasing rapid testing opportunities as the state’s surge in infections continues to strain health care resources.

Statewide, there are more people on ventilators right now than at any other point in the pandemic.

COVID-19 test locations

You can find COVID-19 testing locations near you at https://mn.gov/covid19/get-tested/testing-locations/index.jsp