EXCLUSIVE: Bay Area company says its software can speed up COVID-19 vaccine distribution

BURLINGAME, Calif. (KGO) -- A Bay Area health technology company is coordinating up to 150,000 COVID-19 tests in California each day. Now its CEO is hoping their software can speed up vaccine distribution..

San Francisco has one of the nation's highest per-capita COVID-19 testing rates. Behind the scenes processing the two largest coronavirus test sites is Color Health.

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"We provide registrations, on-site logistics, as well as the back-end testing for these sites," said Othman Laraki, Color Health's CEO.

At their Burlingame lab, Color says they've processed 2.5 million COVID-19 tests to date.

Laraki says they are pivoting fast and focusing on vaccine distribution now.

"Effectively we are replaying in many ways the journey we went through with testing and now playing it through with vaccines," said Laraki. "That is now what we are focused on. We are adding the vaccine delivery on top of the testing protocols we've done."

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Their software and lab results are showing COVID cases surging in underprivileged communities across the state.

Marin County is also using this company for mobile testing. Laraki says that's one of the strategies they want for vaccine distribution.

"It's really good that we are providing these massive vaccinating sites. I think that will serve us for half of the population. The other half that is the most vulnerable one, we need to take vaccination to them the same way we did for testing," said Laraki.

Luz Pena: "What do we need now from the state and counties to expedite the process?"

Othman Laraki: "In many ways, it's an information problem. One, is kind of getting a unified software infrastructure that is simple and enables every single person to make it to the end. Second, is setting up a deliberate strategy to provide access deep into communities."

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The latest California data shows that more than 3.2 million vaccine doses have been distributed throughout the state. Only 40% have been used to date. Laraki says that need is what pushed them to work faster.

"The crisis has forced us to create this infrastructure which I think it'll be important for this next generation as we try to solve public health in a real way in the U.S," said Laraki.

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