To improve location awareness, Prisma Health will pilot using a stationary COVID-19 community testing site throughout the month of August as opposed to moving its testing sites throughout multiple communities each week.
The Columbia site will typically each run three times a week, which is the same number of clinics typically held in each region before the change.
“As we looked at the testing demographics, we realized that most people based the decision on where to get tested on their own schedules, not so much where the testing site was located,” said Jennifer Snow, executive director of Prisma Health’s accountable communities. “Based on that feedback, potential confusion over changing test sites and the lost efficiency of transporting supplies to multiple sites every week, we opted to pilot the use of stationary sites. We hope this new model can provide our communities with consistent sites that people can find more easily and be more easily managed.”
After two weeks of being in the primary locations, Prisma Health will evaluate its testing data to see if the change is causing any unintended access issues.
“We are committed to serving our rural communities and will make changes as necessary to ensure that happens,” said Snow.
The Upstate site will be at Brookwood Church, 580 Brookwood Point Place, Simpsonville. The site launched August 4, and runs every Tuesday, Friday and Saturday throughout August.
The Midlands site will be at the S.C. Department of Consumer Affairs building, 2221 Devine Street, Columbia. That site launches this Saturday, August 8, and then moves to every Tuesday, Friday and Saturday clinics the following week.
The community testing, primarily done in partnership with the S.C. Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC) and state agencies, is designed to reach populations who may not otherwise have access to traditional testing or online virtual visits.
Here is what community members should know about community testing sites:
- All those who think they might have COVID-19 will be tested.
- No one needs a doctor’s order at community sites. (Physician-ordered testing is done at Prisma Health’s hospital-based testing sites.)
- Testing will be given regardless of ability to pay.
- All testing will be finished by noon; organizers suggest arriving early to secure your place in the testing line.
- Spanish-speaking Prisma Health team members will be available at every site.
- All those taking part will be given masks when they arrive. They will also be asked to maintain social distancing.
- Test results should come back within four days.
- Everyone tested will receive follow-up information about test results – whether positive or negative – from providers at Prisma Health.
- Everyone will get tips on isolating at home if sick, caring for themselves and seeking more help if symptoms worsen.
For more information on Prisma Health’s COVID-19 outreach, visit https://www.prismahealth.org/coronavirus/. For more information on COVID-19 testing, visit scdhec.gov/covid19mobileclinics or scdhec.gov/covid19testing.