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How CannaSafe Labs Managed Its Covid-19 Staff Infections

By Leo Bear-McGuinness

Published: May 26, 2020   

Image credit: CannaSafe

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Three employees of CannaSafe, one of California’s larger cannabis testing lab companies, have tested positive for Covid-19, the company has confirmed in an open letter.

Fortunately, all three workers are said to be healthy and recovering at home, and the lab is still operating at full capacity.

Passing the test

Prior to their Covid-19 test results, all three staff members were asymptomatic.

Following the test results, CannaSafe identified all other employees who had been in contact with the Covid-positive staff members and provided free nasal swabs and antibody tests on-site the next day.

All employees were then given two hours paid leave in order to get tested. All subsequent results received so far have been negative.

“The encouragement of testing identified the infected a-symptomatic employee, so potentially we wouldn’t have known if not encouraging and paying employees to get tested,” Antonio Frazier, CannaSafe’s president, told Analytical Cannabis.

“That lead to the in-house tests we paid for out of pocket to get rapid results on potentially exposed staff.”

Social distancing and extra cleaning protocols have been in place in the Los Angeles-based lab since March. But since the employees' positive test results, Frazier and his colleagues have also hired a professional disinfecting crew to decontaminate the lab and office space. Re-usable cloth masks and touchless thermometers were also purchased to minimize the risk of further infections.

“We even had a partner lab donate one [thermometer] to us since they were on a backorder,” Frazier added. “He read Aaron’s [Riley, CannaSafe’s CEO] letter and reached out in solidarity.”

The cannabis testing company hopes that by being transparent about its experience it can help other cannabis businesses navigate Covid-19 outbreaks.

“The general idea of the letter was to get people prepared for the inevitable next waves of this as we reopen the economy,” said Frazier. “We hoped to encourage open conversation so that businesses can figure out how to get through this tough time.”

CannaSafe recently announced it will be opening three new facilities in Oregon, Florida, and Illinois later this year – the company’s first forays outside California.

“Cannabis testing is more important now than ever during these unprecedented times considering the steep spike in cannabis sales,” Aaron Riley said in a statement. “By opening additional laboratories, we are doing our best to persevere despite the circumstances and bring assurance to users.”


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