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Carlsbad COVID-19 testing company shares best practices as businesses think about reopening

GenMark Diagnostics, Carlsbad COVID-19 testing
Posted at 1:11 PM, Apr 17, 2020

CARLSBAD, Calif. (KGTV) - A Carlsbad company that's been working 24/7 during the pandemic is offering advice to other businesses on how to reopen safely.

GenMark Diagnostics focuses on diagnosing infectious diseases.

They were one of the first companies given Food and Drug Administration approval to distribute their rapid COVID-19 test.

"We're working really hard, we're working 24 hours a day seven days a week," Interim CEO Scott Mendel said.

He described their testing kit as a cartridge the size of an iPhone that slides into a machine, where it deconstructs the sample to identify if a disease is present. All completed in an hour and a half.

"It's basically a lab in a cartridge," Mendel said.

They pump out 100,000 cartridges a month to the most devastated areas of the country, including New York, and around the world.

Working to distribute critical supplies, Mendel said safety in their building is a top priority.

"We go through general screening questions every single day when you come into the office," Mendel said, as well as a touch-less temperature check.

"We actually hired additional people that are doing continuous cleaning throughout the days and even into the nights because we have people working 24 hours a day." Mendel said they constantly clean door knobs and common spaces, like the break-room.

Mendel said they also promote social distancing.

"We figured it out on our own but I think a lot of companies as we get into phase two of this and they're starting to return to work, more companies are going to have to do what we've already figured out." Mendel said other CEOs have already reached out to him for their best practices.

He said he's glad to help, thankful for CDC guidelines and proud of his employees.

"The sense of duty that our employees feel is just amazing," he said.

Mendel said they are beefing up production and don't see it slowing down. He said they have dozens of open jobs from tech savy to manufacturing positions.