Message from Billie: Reflecting on Orchard’s “Pandemic Partnerships”
By Billie Whitehurst, CEO
Looking broadly at the effects of the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic, to date, more than 180 million people globally have been infected, and four million people have died of COVID-19. In spite of the administration of more than three billion vaccine doses, many countries remain under some infection control measures, and more than a year later, not only do we still feel the public health impact of the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic, we are struggling to contain the fast-spreading delta variant. The laboratories we support continue to play an integral role in helping mitigate the spread of the virus. We are committed to assisting our customers by efficiently integrating software and informatics tools that support testing workflow and by providing customer service that enables timely testing.
Orchard has played a lead role in enabling our customers to perform rapid, large-scale COVID-19 testing using Orchard’s Enterprise Lab, Molecular, Outreach, and Point-of-Care solutions. We are supporting universities to help them test their faculty and students for COVID-19 using PCR and point-of-care tests. Orchard’s solutions include specific laboratory information management functionality for our customers that are performing or collecting COVID-19 tests. Our products’ sophisticated rules engines facilitate advanced workflows that can help laboratories quickly process, reflex, and route specimens, as well as provide robust capabilities to conduct and monitor QC/QA activities.
As testing demands fluctuate, laboratories are finding innovative ways to utilize the analyzers and equipment that they brought onboard to address initial demand. In addition to supporting the ongoing testing demand for COVID-19, Orchard is helping its customers expand current instrument platforms used for COVID-19 testing into other areas. For example, some laboratories are now validating and performing respiratory pathogen profiles, and testing for wound, nail, and urinary tract infections using the newly acquired instruments. Other reference lab customers are in the process of implementing a direct-to-consumer program that offers testing direct to the public and Orchard is there to support this testing shift.
We are proud of the work that our lab partners provide to support public health and patient care and of the determination and perseverance that laboratory professionals demonstrate in the face of new challenges. This pandemic has been a testament to our ability to work together to address a challenging healthcare crisis. The laboratory continues to be an integral part of addressing a public health crisis as we continue to learn lessons from the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic and apply them to future healthcare situations.
As always, Orchard is your reliable lab IT partner along the way, looking for innovative solutions to support the lab’s role in patient care.