Testing of Area COVID-19 Samples Underway in Baylor School Lab

Baylor School faculty members Dr. Elizabeth Forrester and Dr. Dawn Richards, who are also Ph.D. research scientists, have developed a testing protocol for COVID-19 and began testing local samples in their lab at Baylor on Friday, March 27.

County Mayor Jim Coppinger announced in a Hamilton County Commission meeting last Wednesday, March 25, that the research lab at Baylor had been certified as a clinical lab to test COVID-19 samples and has been leased by the county to help with efforts to identify and prevent the spread of the virus.  Drs. Forrester and Richards are donating their time for the effort. 

The county has requested $1.5 million to purchase additional supplies from the Federal government.  This money will be used to cover additional tests, equipment, medical technicians, and other expenses.  These purchases will then be property of the county. 

Dr. Forrester and Dr. Richards are trained in molecular biology and in working with viruses, and have the specialized equipment in their lab at Baylor to provide necessary assistance for Hamilton County. 

For more information about Baylor science, engineering and research program, click here.

NOTE: Baylor is not a public testing site. Our lab will be used for testing samples provided by local health officials from other test locations.

No individual will go to Baylor School's campus for any testing. The swabs will be collected each day at Erlanger, CHI Memorial and Parkridge hospitals and delivered by courier to the Baylor lab.  Coppinger reported to commissioners that Baylor’s lab will be able to do about 65 tests daily, and will give hospital workers and patients priority. After more equipment becomes available, the lab could test up to 300 tests daily.