NEW CUMBERLAND, Pa. –
Defense Logistics Agency Distribution San Joaquin, California, is packing and distributing 6 million COVID-19 rapid test kits on behalf of the Department of Health and Human Services. Test components, which are being produced by a small business in San Diego, will be distributed to nursing homes and Defense Department customers worldwide through March 2021.
“The men and women of Team San Joaquin are honored to have been selected to handle this no-fail mission for DLA,” said DLA Distribution San Joaquin Deputy Commander Jodie Johnson-Micks. “This unprecedented pandemic hits close to home for every American, and we understand the important responsibility we’ll have in getting these critical testing supplies in the hands of health care professionals treating some of our country’s most vulnerable.”
HHS’ COVID-19 rapid test kit mission includes receipt, storage, component assembly, issue, transportation and delivery tracking. Components include test swab cartridges, swabs, a reader and an active temperature-monitoring device. The reader analyzes specimens and transmits test results to a mobile application in about 25 minutes.
The first shipment of rapid test kit components arrived in San Joaquin Oct. 27 and will continue every two weeks through March. Although 90% of the components are shipping to DDJC’s refrigerated warehouse for assembly and shipment to nationwide nursing homes, 10% are shipping to DLA Distribution Susquehanna, Pennsylvania, for assembly and shipment to DOD customers worldwide. The mission will help preserve military readiness and prepare nursing homes for the second wave of the virus, Johnson-Micks said.
DLA Distribution is using a mix of transportation modes to reduce costs and speed delivery. Military air assets will fly shipments to locations not served by commercial carriers.
To maintain auditability and customers’ trust, the distribution center employees are also tracking shipments by lot number and destination.
“It is truly humbling to help showcase DLA’s capabilities as a world-class storage and distribution operation,” Johnson-Micks added.