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False monkeypox tests lead to internal investigation at Idaho Bureau of Laboratories

The full scale-investigation identified the source of the error and remedies have been established to ensure that this doesn't happen again, IBL said.
Credit: KTVB
The Idaho Department of Health and Welfare

IDAHO, USA — The Idaho Bureau of Laboratories (IBL) announced that a critical sample handling error that resulted in the reporting of a false positive monkeypox test result for a patient in southwest Idaho and a false negative test for another patient led to an internal investigation.

According to a press release, the affected patients and their contacts are being notified. IBL said that monkeypox testing was temporarily suspended on Monday, Aug. 1 while the investigation went on.

The full scale-investigation identified the source of the error and remedies have been established to ensure that this doesn't happen again, IBL said. Testing for the viral disease has resumed at IBL and is also available through several commercial laboratories.

“We are confident this was a one-time event, and we have implemented corrective actions to ensure an error like this does not happen again”, said Idaho Bureau of Laboratories Chief Dr. Christopher Ball. “We remain committed to providing Idahoans accurate and timely information as we respond to this new outbreak. We sincerely apologize to all those who were impacted by this unfortunate situation.” 

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