COVID Consortium Launches to Help Firms Navigate Testing

Patrick Hickey

Friday, May 1st, 2020

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Augusta-based CopernicusMD, a leader in medical, laboratory and billing analytics, yesterday announced the launch of The COVID Consortium, a council of physicians, business leaders, clinical laboratory executives and retired military brass to provide testing resources and guidance to businesses across the country preparing to re-open in the COVID-19 environment.

“Over the last six weeks, our team has heard from countless business owners confused about testing requirements, ongoing safety measures and compliance guidelines to be applied when they re-open their workplaces,” said Dr. Ellen Shaver, a neurosurgeon and retired U.S. Army lieutenant colonel. “Unfortunately for business owners both small and large, there has not been clear, concise direction as to employee testing or guidance for workplace safety measures as it pertains to the unique challenges each business faces in this ongoing pandemic. Customer and co-worker proximity in many businesses make social distancing challenging, if not impossible.”

Businesses have tried to understand the types of testing required to maintain a safe workplace, but also struggle with accessing the necessary testing in order to re-open safely in an economy already on life support. “The goal of the consortium is to collaborate and pool the resources available from a number of High Complexity Labs across the U.S. that have been under-utilized by both state and federal agencies to provide businesses access to necessary workforce testing,” stated Dr. Hani El-Shawa, PhD, CEO of AlphaGenomix and a consortium panel member. “Consortium member labs are providing Real-Time PCR and antibody testing at scale to detect current or prior employee infection. This testing is necessary for the re-entrance into the economy for companies of all sizes.”

The COVID Consortium leadership also provides companies with a diverse panel to draw on expertise in crisis management, like that of retired Gen. Nolen Bivens, president of LeaderSix and a Consortium founding member, or clinical guidance from physicians like Dr. Joseph Shaver. As a critical care specialist, Dr. Shaver has spent the last 24 years treating burn trauma and infectious disease patients

“The driving force behind the Consortium is to provide COVID-19 testing to our nation’s businesses, but also to collaborate in HR policy creation to mitigate the ongoing threat of COVID-19 in the workplace and the potential for workplace infection,” Dr. Shaver says. Editor’s Note: The COVID Consortium will be hosting an online round table on Thursday, April 30 at 3:00 p.m. for business owners of all sizes.

To register for this free educational event, you can visit

For more information about The COVID Consortium visit

Patrick Hickey is a staff writer for InsiderAdvantage Georgia and James magazine.