The ongoing swine flu episode is highlighting Alabama's need for a new state laboratory.

Workers at the 30-year-old lab on the campus of Auburn University Montgomery found themselves reaching around one another in the cramped space while working 16-hour days, six days a week during the height of the flu emergency.

Officials say the lab is outdated.

Renovations to the facility would cost 30 to 32 million dollars and would take the department about three years to complete.

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