Doctors and laboratories are having to limit other types of testing because they only have so many supplies, and covid-19 testing is taking priority, reports the Wall Street Journal.
Covid-19 tests have siphoned supplies crucial for other kinds of medical exams, including strep throat, fungal infections and sexually transmitted diseases, forcing some labs to ration testing for certain conditions.
Doctors and laboratories face shortfalls of the swabs, chemicals and other equipment needed to test patients and process tests, partly because supply chains were rewired during the pandemic to ramp up production of Covid-19 tests.
Due to the shortages, some medical-testing labs have had to limit how many samples they can process and what conditions they can test for.
Roughly 30% of labs surveyed the week of Oct. 26 by the American Society for Microbiology and the Association of Supply Chain Management said they were experiencing shortages of supplies to detect bacteria that cause infections such as strep throat, bronchitis and urinary-tract infections.
Half of the 127 labs surveyed said they were short on supplies for routine fungal infections ranging from superficial skin conditions to serious lung and blood diseases, the society said.
Read more at the Wall Street Journal (subscription required to read full article).