There is a lot to consider when setting up a temporary COVID testing site, but One Health Labs (OHL) partners with clients to make the process as smooth and seamless as possible. We have done it countless times, at this point, and we have a blueprint that enables us to support any client in any city.
OHL currently operates in eight cities across the U.S., including three locations in California. Our three largest client types are film productions, corporate offices, and schools, but our customizable model applies to any business or organization, enabling us to set up on-site COVID testing for employees anywhere.
Here’s how we do it.
Regulatory Approvals and Site Selection
If the client is in a location where we are not currently operating, our first step is to research the regulatory requirements of that city or state. We will submit the required paperwork and obtain the licenses needed to operate.
If the client provides us with space, then OHL will provide information about what is needed for square footage, electricity, and testing supplies based on the client’s estimate of testing volume and desired testing turnaround times. Typically, OHL needs three weeks to get a site up and running. If the client does not have space, we will find a suitable location. And if a client needs OHL on site for just a short period of time, we can potentially be up and running within just a few days’ time.
Staffing and Logistics
While OHL obtains state and local approvals and identifies the testing location, we also start recruiting and training local staff and shipping equipment and supplies to the site. Since these are temporary testing sites, we work with recruiting firms to hire staff. OHL also posts to local job boards, at colleges, etc. “We can train anyone on our processes especially for the front of the house, as long as they have good customer service skills and understand HIPAA rules and will be compliant with all of our procedures. But testing staff needs to be trained laboratory personnel,” says Brianna Sewell, OHL’s director of laboratory operations.
OHL staff will be on-site a week ahead to set up the site, validate the tests that will be used, and train local staff. Our coordinators work closely with client representatives to walk through the process, so everyone understands what to expect on the first day of testing. An OHL testing supervisor will be present for the first week to make sure the operation is running smoothly.
The Client’s Role
To best support OHL in their work, OHL staff need to work closely with designated staff on the client side who will handle communications with any employees who test positive. These are often health and safety personnel, but OHL needs at least one point person to coordinate with. In addition, the client point person helps OHL with the pace of testing by managing the testing schedule for employees.
“OHL typically offers a six-hour collection window on a given day, but that can be adjusted based on anticipated volume. Depending on how many people need to be tested, we can provide an estimate of how many hours we will be on site,” says Sewell.
OHL can provide testing for any length of time, whether that be one week or two days a week for an extended period of time.
Working with Schools
OHL can work with schools who need to test a pool of samples. Typically, the samples are collected by school staff and then sent to our lab for testing. We pool those samples and test a whole classroom together. We notify the school if there is a positive test in a classroom so that school administrators can take appropriate measures.
Setting Up Your Testing Site
Our experience creating testing sites in a wide variety of settings has enabled us, through a combination of standardization and customization, to efficiently set up new testing sites wherever they are required.
Does your organization need on-site testing? Let’s talk.