Covid-19 (SARS-CoV-2) Viral and Antibody Testing

Provided by the GW Department of Pathology Hospital Laboratory (GWH Laboratory)

Our GWUH CLIA certified laboratory has been providing COVID-19 (SARS-CoV-2) RT-PCR, rapid testing since March 2020, supporting excellence in patient care at the GWU Hospital, health care worker testing, the District of Columbia area communities, and beyond. 

These are the tests provided at the GWH Laboratory:

SARS-CoV-2 TEST Run Time GWH Lab Turn Around Time Positivity Agreement With Test Comparator (Test Sensitivity) Negativity Agreement with Test Comparator (Test Specificity)

CDC RT-PCR (PCR Molecular)

3 Hr

24 hr

100% (CI: 69-100%)

100% (CI: 69-100%)

Cepheid RT-PCR

45 min
2 hr
100% (CI:74-100%)
100% (CI:74-100%)

Abbott ID NOW (Isothermic Amplification)

5-15 min
15-30 min
Related to viral load/PCR Ct values*
100% (CI: 99.6-100%)

Serology Test Total Antibody (Ortho Diagnostics)

48 min
1-12 hr
87.5% (CI: 74.8-95.3%)
100% (CI: 99.1-100%)

*The test sensitivity of Abbott ID NOW is associated with the viral load as assessed by Ct values of RT-PCR assays. Abbott ID NOW has been determined in our laboratory to detect 100% (95% CI: 94-100%) of samples with SARS-CoV-2 viral loads at Ct values of 35 or lower as detected by RT-PCR assays.

Where does the SARS-CoV-2 testing happen and make it possible?
The GWH Laboratory is located in the GWU Hospital and testing is performed 24/7 by our amazing team of laboratory technologists, administrative and pathologist's team. See the team in a series of photos below.

What sample types do we accept for SARS-CoV-2 testing?
Nasopharyngeal swabs (For viral testing)
Oropharyngeal swabs (For viral testing)
Blood sample (For serological antibody testing)

How can you request to be tested at the GWH laboratory?
For GW Hospital patients GWH physicians submit lab test orders through established protocols
For GW MFA healthcare workers MFA doctors submit testing orders to the GWH Lab
For Community testing, contact our client services or the GWH Laboratory administrative leadership - Phone: 202 415 4665; email:

The GWH Pathology Laboratory team that makes SARS-CoV-2 test results possible and timely reported

They are Molecular Virology technologists in the GW Genomic and Molecular Pathology and Microbiology laboratory sections
They are the heroes in the COVID-19 battle at the GWH Laboratory
They go above and beyond 24/7 timely test results for patients and the community
Thank you GWH Laboratory team!

Microbiology Manager: Salome Mendoza
Molecular Technical Specialist: Maria Codoy
Laboratory Technologists: Jessie Bhutani, Manuela Brothers, Yujin Lee, Richard Adu, Samuel Burns, Ella Amendah, Andrea Ordonez-Atuesta, Maria Arce, Gizachew Demessie
Core Laboratory Manager: Nancy Isaacson
Core Laboratory Technical Specialists: Zachary Sands and Aristotle Santos
Laboratory Medical Directors: Dr. Antonia Sepulveda; Dr. John Keise

Medical lab specialist working at his desk
Two people working at the computer
Core lab workstation

Latest News

Members of the Department of Pathology presented at USCAP 2024. Check out our Twitter/X page for more content from the event!
Welcome, New Residents!
Congratulations to Dr. Rebecca Yee on her selection as a 2023 ASCP 40 Under Forty honoree.