State of MN botches 300 COVID-19 tests

St. Paul, Minn. (AP) State health officials are apologizing for bungled COVID-19 testing at a St. Paul nursing home done by a Minnesota National Guard unit this week.

Test samples from 300 residents and staff members at the Episcopal Church Home were ruined because they were not stored in coolers while being transported to labs at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester.

The guard unit was deployed to the nursing home Monday as part of the state’s effort to ramp up testing at long-term care facilities.

The Star Tribune says that because there weren’t enough nasal swabs for the tests, a state health official allowed oral swabs to be used, which caused pain and bloody noses for some who were tested.