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Elanco Animal Health steps up to fight COVID-19

Company donates material needed for accurate tests

The Community Health Center of Fort Dodge recently received a needed assist in the fight against COVID-19 from a special source: Elanco Animal Health.

Elanco, which has a sprawling research and production facility on the northwest side of Fort Dodge, gave the health center about 1,000 vials full of a substance called viral transport media. Viral transport media isn’t medicine. It is a preservative that keeps viruses active. Keeping viruses active may seem like a particularly bad idea lately. But in the fight against the coronavirus, there is a reason for doing so. When a health care provider at the center conducts a test for COVID-19, the sample they collect is placed in the viral transport media to be sent to a lab. If the virus is present in that sample, the viral transport media will preserve it, helping to ensure an accurate test result.

Obtaining good test results that will show who is infected and who is not is key to fighting COVID-19.

Renae Kruckenberg, the chief executive officer of the Community Health Center of Fort Dodge, described the viral transport media as ”the key component” that was missing. She said the shortage of the material forced the center’s staff to be even more selective when deciding who to test for the virus.

Kruckenberg decided to ask the staff at Elanco Animal Health if they could provide some viral transport media to the center. She wasn’t at all sure the company could help.

The company certainly did help, delivering about 1,000 vials of the material.

Elanco Animal Health came through, using employee time and materials to make all that viral transport media. The company didn’t make a dime doing so. It did, however, make a difference in the care of patients at the Community Health Center of Fort Dodge. We thank the company for stepping forward to serve its neighbors during this pandemic.

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