FARMINGTON – Two boxes of COVID-19 tests from two area personal health care facilities were found on the ground Jan. 29 outside a UPS drop location in Farmington.
The two boxes, which were each labeled “Laboratory Box,” were left outside the UPS location at 2603 W. Main St. in front of the full drop box. Customers formed a line across the front of the building because staff members allowed only two people inside at any given time.
It was unclear when the boxes had been dropped off or how long they had gone unattended.
A woman who works for a different health care facility said that the boxes are used to send COVID-19 test samples for analysis.
One box belonged to Generations Personal Care Inc., 942 Schofield Lane, in Farmington. The other came from Life Care Center of Farmington, 1101 W. Murray Drive, a nursing and rehabilitation facility.
When made aware of the situation, the store’s UPS manager sent someone outside to collect the packages.
Josh Martin, executive director of Life Care, said the issue had been brought to his attention.
“It has come to our attention that our process for mailing some lab tests may not have been completely followed,” Martin said in an emailed statement to The Durango Herald.
He added that the tests were confirmed to have been delivered to the lab and that the results were returned.
While Life Care did not disclose its current mailing process, Martin said, “we have taken steps to re-educate staff on our processes for mailing.”
The tests were addressed to the laboratory at Curative, 430 S. Cataract Ave. in San Dimas, California.
Curative, which was founded in January 2020, was recently dropped as a testing lab by Colorado health agencies because of concerns about false-negative test results.
Generations Personal Care did not respond to requests for comment.
Manager of media relations at the national UPS office in Atlanta, Matt O’Connor, said the company is aware of the situation.
“We would appreciate it if the packages are deposited in the drop box, or in situations such as this where there are several boxes, brought to the customer counter so our employees can personally receive them,” O’Connor said in an email to the Herald.
He added that the company also offers scheduled pickup times at the businesses.
A spokesman for Curative said the company is looking into the situation.