PEKIN, Ill. (WMBD) – Two Pekin companies are ready to expand their services to the community and the rest of the country.
PAL Health Technologies and Reditus Laboratories had a formal ribbon-cutting ceremony and open house Tuesday. Those who came out were also treated to a tour of the remodeled and expanded facilities.
Dr. Aaron Rossi is the CEO of both companies and said the open house gave a snippet into his vision for medical and technological advancement in the area.
“It is exciting to get the ability to have everybody see what we’ve created,” Rossi said.
PAL Health Technologies is credited for its leadership in prescription orthoses. It’s been around since 1976 and fabricates foot orthoses, custom diabetic inserts, and custom ankle-foot orthoses.
During the start of the pandemic, Dr. Rossi said they also started manufacturing face shields for healthcare workers and recently added digital printing for more custom orthoses.
“It’s nice to get PAL some recognition on all the work we’ve done within the facility, remodeled everything,” Rossi said. “And [we’re] just looking forward to the future.”
The company that’s recently received the most attention locally of the two, Reditius Laboratories, has been one of the key testing services in the fight against COVID-19.
“We’re just there to support the community and make sure we’re doing what we can to push things forward and make sure that everybody’s comfortable with how things are at and provide them access to testing.”
Rossi said the ability to keep providing the community with access to testing is getting better now that Reditus Laboratories is expanding into a full-service laboratory.
He said the company opened as a histology lab for podiatrists in 2019 and only had 10 employees who helped to diagnose diseases of the nail and skin.
Reditus Laboratories now has more than 300 employees. He said in addition to COVID-19 testing, the lab is taking on molecular testing, clinical laboratory testing, cancer testing, and expects to expand into areas of microbiology and next-generation sequencing.
Rossi said he’s also focusing on using Reditus Laboratories to spur the economy and bring jobs to the area.
“We’re really working on the outside too to continue to really help grow the area, grow jobs, and grow opportunities here in Central Illinois,” Rossi said.
Mark Luft, Pekin’s mayor, said the growth is helping put Pekin back on the map.
“Pekin for a couple of decades has been silent and being the largest community in Tazewell County, that kind of bothered some of us,” Luft said. “So we worked really hard to resurface Pekin, and it feels really good after a long slumber to be awake again and watch the community enjoy this process and being back on the map.”
Currently, there’s no end to the pandemic insight and Rossi said Reditus Laboratories will continue using its resources to help, such as providing surveillance COVID testing for schools.
“It’s a big deal to try to help us keep individuals safe when they’re going to school, coming back from school, and provide the direction they need,” Rossi said.
Reditus’ staff also said they’re in the process of expanding into offering FluV19 At-Home Collection Kit. Customers would be able to collect their own nasal specimen at home and overnight the sample to Reditus where staff would then test it for Influenza A, B as well as COVID-19. They said results would be available 24-48 hours after the lab receives the specimens.