Governor also announces COVID-19 Testing Task Force to boost California’s testing capacity
SACRAMENTO – Governor Gavin Newsom today announced the launch of a new website, covid19supplies.ca.gov, to get critical medical supplies to the front lines of California’s fight against COVID-19. The website will allow individuals and companies to donate, sell or offer to manufacture 13 of the most essential medical supplies, including ventilators, N95 respirators and testing materials.
Governor Newsom also announced the COVID-19 Testing Task Force, a public-private collaboration that will work with stakeholders across the state to quickly and significantly boost California’s testing capacity. The Task Force plans to scale up testing as demand increases.
“These actions marshal the generosity and innovative spirit of Californians to help us achieve two essential goals: getting more lifesaving supplies into our health care system and increasing our testing capacity,” said Governor Newsom.
Governor Newsom called on companies, organizations and individuals who have medical supplies to contribute, either for donation or purchase, to support California’s response to COVID-19 and visit covid19supplies.ca.gov.
Additionally, three specific collaborations have launched today as part of the testing effort:
- Collaboration with the University of California, San Diego and University of California, Davis to establish high throughput testing hubs.
- Collaboration with Stanford Medicine to launch the first serology test invented in California.
- Collaboration with Abbott Laboratories to deploy the first rapid point-of-care test across 13 health care delivery systems and 75 sites.
The Task Force, co-chaired by California Department of Public Health Assistant Director Charity Dean, M.D., M.P.H. and Blue Shield of California President and CEO Paul Markovich, will ensure the state has sufficient capacity and supplies to administer a significantly greater number of tests.
“The Task Force is connecting with laboratories across California to tap into unique technologies to improve and refine our testing capabilities to ensure we’re meeting the needs of patients across the state,” said Dr. Dean.
The Testing Task Force is focusing on:
- Ensuring California has lab capacity to rapidly turn around test results and increase capacity strategically to meet demand;
- Improving the supply chain to ensure that California can both collect samples and evaluate results without delay;
- Enabling new, high-quality tests to launch in California as soon as possible;
- Improving our ability to accurately track and evaluate COVID-19 testing capacity, results and reporting; and
- Building the workforce necessary to meet our testing goals.
“The Task Force will work together with California academic systems, private systems, public health experts and others to ensure we’re creating the most streamlined and effective way to evaluate testing data,” Blue Shield of California President and CEO Paul Markovich said. “This kind of public-private collaboration will allow us to tap into the systems needed to get the results California deserves.”