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With the support of Louisiana Governor, John Bel Edwards, and the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid (CMS), scientists at LSU Health Shreveport have established the Emerging Viral Threat (EVT) Laboratory to address the need for faster detection and processing of COVID-19 tests. The EVT Lab at LSUHS is the first in North Louisiana approved by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid (CMS) to conduct and analyze tests to determine if an individual has COVID-19. The EVT Lab is currently in operation and fully staffed as of March 25, 2020.

OUR MISSION is to serve the citizens of the state and diagnose the presence of SARS-CoV-2 / COVID-19 and then to become the region’s top surveillance lab for the detection of new viruses and other pathogens  that could affect the health of citizens of the region and state.


“LSU Health Shreveport is proud to have nationally and internationally renowned NIH funded virologists on our faculty. Creation of the Emerging Viral Threat (EVT) laboratory brings together numerous regional experts to provide urgently needed COVID-19 testing solutions while allowing our community and state to be prepared for future viral threats when they occur."

Dr. Chris Kevil, Vice Chancellor for Research


The EVT Lab is working to obtain complete genome sequences of the viruses from samples in cooperation with nationwide and international efforts to better understand the virus, enable molecular epidemiology work, such as contact tracing, and to inform future vaccine efforts. LSU Health Shreveport is also the only academic center in Louisiana with this capability. The lab provides the same offerings as CDC testing locations and is working collaboratively with the World Health Organization and CDC-sanctioned testing labs, following the same testing criteria.

LSU Health Shreveport faculty and staff will be processing the tests and will be adhering to all personal protective equipment (PPE) guidelines. Data obtained from testing samples will be used for further COVID-19 research to better determine how to combat the virus.

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FAQs Regarding EVT Lab


FAQs Regarding Testing


Latest News on the EVT Lab and Research

EVT Lab testing equipment, photo

We are very appreciative of this generous gift from Mr. Organick and Inferno Manufacturing Corp. It will be put to invaluable use in expanding the access to both viral and antibody testing, particularly in underserved areas of north Louisiana,” stated Chancellor Ghali.

Read More about Private donation helps support LSU Health Shreveport’s mobile COVID-19 testing (opens in new window/tab)
Feist-Weiller Partners in Wellness van repurposed for COVID-19 screenings photo

Dr. Andrew Yurochko shares that in some areas of NW Louisiana, Feist-Weiller's "Partners in Wellness", while focused on mammography and other cancer screening, also provided the only health care available. Now, the program’s three vans offer testing for COVID-19.

Read More about Feist-Weiller mammography vans repurposed to screen for COVID-19 in northwest Louisiana (opens in new window/tab)
News story by WBRZ-2 with update on clinical trials

“We know a lot of these things work, we just don’t know when they work the best. And that’s what we’re trying to figure out really right now is when, how much and where. And that’s the confusing part of this whole disease. It’s nothing like we’ve ever seen, nothing like medicine has ever seen,” Dr. Keith Scott said.

Read More about Researchers say more time, data will determine if nitric oxide therapy is effective against COVID-19 (opens in new window/tab)
Photo: Scientists at work in the LSU Health Shreveport EVT Lab

Emerging Viral Threat Lab

Photo of scientists at work in the LSU Health Shreveport EVT Lab

Emerging Viral Threat Lab