Quest to allow patients to order lab testing from home

Quest Diagnostics launched a direct-to-consumer service that allows users to order and pay for lab tests from home.

Dubbed QuestDirect, the online service offers 35 diagnostic test packages covering general health and wellness, men’s and women’s health, and the heart and digestive system, as well as panels for infections or sexually transmitted diseases.

To order, consumers select their own lab tests online—with independent physicians providing clinical oversight and ordering the testing—before making an appointment to visit a Quest patient service center for specimen collection.

Through collaborations with Safeway and Walmart announced over the past two years, Quest expects to have over 200 of its over 2,200 patient service centers in retail store locations by the end of the year.

According to the company, results take less than week and can be accessed through the online portal, where they can be shared with a designated doctor or family member.

Currently the tests are available in all states outside of Arizona, Indiana, Oklahoma, Alaska and Hawaii, as well as Puerto Rico. Quest also says it is unable to bill insurance for tests purchased through QuestDirect, including Medicare and Medicaid, with payment being the patient’s responsibility.

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Meanwhile, Quest completed its acquisition of Oxford Immunotec’s U.S. laboratory services business, first announced in late September. The move adds the T-SPOT.TB tuberculosis and the Accutix tick-borne disease tests to Quest’s diagnostics portfolio.

In addition, the two companies agreed to collaborate on further development of the T-SPOT.TB test in the U.S., while Quest plans to continue offering Qiagen’s QuantiFERON TB services.

Oxford Immunotec had previously sued Quest, as well as diagnostics heavyweights Qiagen and LabCorp, for infringing the patents related to its T-SPOT.TB test, but the case was settled in December 2017 for $27.5 million in exchange for a non-exclusive license granted to Qiagen for its QuantiFERON TB test.