NASHVILLE, TN (WSMV) - Pam was nervous enough just taking her 86-year-old mother Margaret to get a coronavirus test at a Vanderbilt walk-in clinic.

“She was having difficulty breathing. It was very stressful because she is 86 years old,” said Pam, who ask that News4 Investigates not use her last name for medical privacy reasons.

Pam would later receive the results of her own coronavirus test but got a call that the test order for her mother was lost.

“Just made me feel like what am I supposed to do? This is a journey where the left hand doesn’t know what the right hand is doing,” Pam said.

Pam said she was told because of the lost test order, her mother would be to be brought in once again to be retested.

“I was livid. I’m subjecting an 86-year-old person and myself back into an environment which from the first time took three hours,” Pam said.

Lisa Quigley, chief of staff to U.S. Congressman Jim Cooper, D-TN, confirmed to News4 Investigates that her test was also lost at Vanderbilt, and then after she retested, that second test was either lost or unusable.

Quigley said she in no way blames Vanderbilt and understands that at the time she and her family were tested, the system was overwhelmed with tests.

John Howser, chief communications officer for Vanderbilt University Medical Center, sent a statement to News4 Investigates that confirmed tests had been lost but in small numbers, reading in part, “The incidence of lost samples has not been zero across the more than 15,000 tests we’ve performed in the last 30 days.”

Brian Todd, spokesman for Metro Public Health, said there are no reports of lost tests in their system.

For Pam, the lost order only made a difficult time that much more stressful.

“You just want to cry out to the heavens, ‘Is this ever going to end?’” Pam said

Pam said tests later showed that her mother has one strand of the COVID-19.


Chief Investigative Reporter

Jeremy Finley is the chief investigator for News4 Investigates. His reporting has resulted in criminal convictions, legislative hearings before the U.S. Congress, and the payout of more than a million dollars to scam victims.

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