Same-day inpatient COVID-19 testing, first in Mid-Michigan

Published: March 20, 2020

LANSING, MI – Sparrow has become the first hospital in Mid-Michigan, and among only a few in the state, to perform same-day COVID-19 testing at its Center for Laboratory Medicine in Lansing.

Sparrow was the first health system in Michigan with the capability to deliver a laboratory-confirmed Coronavirus diagnosis to inpatients who have been admitted to the hospital with suspected COVID-19 symptoms or distress.

Sparrow test results are significantly quicker than the current wait times for testing from the state laboratory, which is currently between 48 and 72 hours. Sparrow reports it now has the capacity to process 60 number of COVID-19 specimens for same-day results, if needed.

Sparrow continues to conduct daily screening for Coronavirus symptoms on all Caregivers, Patients and visitors.

“Sparrow medical Providers and Caregivers welcome this heightened capability to confirm or rule out the highly viral and contagious risk posed by COVID-19,” said Dr. James E. Richard, DO, director of Sparrow Laboratories. “Patients and their families also deserve to know what they are facing so they can make important decisions.”

On-site testing by hospitals was made possible after the U.S. Food and Drug Administration implemented emergency authorization to develop testing. Once the standards were released to allow on-site testing, Walid Khalife, Ph.D., Director of Scientific Affairs, and the Sparrow Lab staff immediately applied for status and began implementing the steps needed to bring this service to Mid-Michigan.

While this service is not currently available for non-hospitalized Patients, Sparrow continues to support the efforts of its providers to collect Coronavirus specimens for confirmation at its outpatient laboratory sites, including a newly established drive-through collection site at its Sparrow Hospital St. Lawrence campus. Those tests will still require confirmation by the state lab.

Sparrow Laboratories is among the top 20 busiest hospital labs in the country, processing more than 8 million tests a year.


Sparrow, a member of the prestigious Mayo Clinic Care Network, is mid-Michigan’s premier healthcare organization that includes hospitals in Lansing, Charlotte, St. Johns, Ionia and Carson City as well as Physicians Health Plan, Sparrow Care Network, Sparrow Medical Group and the Michigan Athletic Club. Sparrow is affiliated with Michigan Medicine through the Sparrow Children’s Center and with Michigan State University’s three human health colleges. Through these partnerships and the dedication of our 10,000 Caregivers, Sparrow pursues a vision to be nationally recognized as a leader in quality and Patient experience. For more information, visit