Capital BlueCross brings new lab technology to East Coast

ENOLA, Pa. (WHTM) – There’s new technology in central Pennsylvania that is changing the way blood is drawn for tests. It needs only a pin prick of blood from your finger instead of a needle stuck into a vein.

The technology is called Theranos. It’s meant to keep you healthy at a reasonable cost, but the only place on the East Coast you’ll find it is in Enola.

“We’re always looking for disruptive new technology, even if it disrupts our own line of business,” said Aji Abraham, Senior Vice President for Business and Network Development for Capital BlueCross.

Theranos is a lab company based in California.

“Theranos is a tool that helps you get involved in your own health care, and also engages in ensuring you’re as healthy as you can be,” Abraham said.

As opposed to a full withdraw of blood, Theranos only uses drops of blood for testing. The response time is faster than traditional labs and they say the pricing is low, too. It’s 50 percent of the cost of Medicare.

“A lot of people are scared of needles and often when the doctor prescribes a lab test, they won’t fill it simply because they’re afraid of the needle and blood draw,” Abraham said.

Here’s how it works: You get a prescription from your doctor, bring it to the Capital BlueCross center in Enola, you get your finger pricked, and the results are back to you in as little as 24 to 48 hours.

“It’s important because we really want you involved in your health care to make sure you’re helping control not only the health care cost but also your health,” Abraham said.

Theranos does the testing, but they have to send that information to California to get the results. They hope to have their own lab in central Pennsylvania by the end of this year.

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