Thousands of COVID-19 tests from LAUSD students, staff processed at Silicon Valley startup

LOS ANGELES (KABC) -- One swab at a time, 500,000 times each week, the Los Angeles Unified School District tests its students and staff for COVID-19. It is a massive program and district officials say it's the key to keeping schools open.

"Testing has been our silver lining. Testing and masks have been our silver lining. I still come into school fearful. Every teacher here is just fearful about the idea that during our watch, the kids that are on our watch, that somebody could get, contract something," said one school official.

The district had a lot of choices when it came to testing companies. They went with a Silicon Valley startup, SummerBio Lab.

While it does cost more to ship samples to Northern California, SummerBio Lab has an automated process allowing them to charge the school district just $10 per test.

"Our goal for day one was to build the most automated COVID testing facility in the country," said a SummerBio Lab spokesman. "And so we have fully automated, end-to-end, PCR testing of patient samples."

Eyewitness News reporter John Gregory has a look at the testing process. Press play on the video above to watch the full story.

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