Lab Professionals: Healthcare’s Hidden Heroes

Lab Week 2020 could not have come at a more appropriate time—right in the midst of a global pandemic that has shined a spotlight on the vital work performed in labs across the world.

At BioFire, we’ve long admired the hardworking medical laboratory professionals and pathologists whose work empowers physicians to make key treatment decisions. But now we simply are in awe of the heroic lab workers who are putting in long, grueling hours behind the scenes to help tackle the unprecedented COVID-19 pandemic.

“Lab workers are the heroes that we should celebrate. We like the narrative of a single person saving us all, but it’s more about the quiet, unassuming lab tech professionals who are going to help us get out of this,” Chris Nelson, PhD, said in an interview with TODAY. Nelson is a scientist in the biotech industry, but he temporarily joined the University of Washington Virology Division to help with its massive workload.

In an ongoing video docuseries, the American College of Clinical Pathology (ASCP) has been highlighting the tremendous efforts to battle COVID-19 that are taking place in labs across the country. In one video, Dr. Alex Greninger, assistant director of the Clinical Virology Laboratory at the University of Washington School of Medicine, noted that laboratory professionals are having a meaningful impact on COVID-19 testing.

“Our job in the Clinical Virology Lab is to bend the curve and to stop the transmissions. So we try to break the models that other people create,” he said. “This is where the science meets medicine. Especially in this area, where there were no tests, and we can offer sort of one of the first tests, you can have a big impact.”

For Labs

Around the globe, physicians and patients are depending on lab professionals to deliver reliable answers as quickly as possible.

We want to extend our heartfelt thanks to the lab workers who are fighting, unseen, on the frontlines of this pandemic every day. We see you. At BioFire, we know that real heroes don’t wear capes. They wear lab coats, goggles, and gloves.