Coronavirus: Drive-through testing station aims to help flatten the curve

accreditation
HealthInsite, a corporate wellness and occupational health service provider in collaboration with Mullah Labs, has set up a drive-through Covid-19 testing station at the stadium. (Supplied)
HealthInsite, a corporate wellness and occupational health service provider in collaboration with Mullah Labs, has set up a drive-through Covid-19 testing station at the stadium. (Supplied)

If you are someone who frequents Corlett Drive in Johannesburg, you might have noticed a strange sight at Wanderers Club on Thursday.

People dressed in white protective gear from head to toe at the main entrance might have caught your eye but fear not, they are there to help you.

DAY 1 | SA wakes up to a new reality as 21-day lockdown begins, arrests already made

HealthInsite, a corporate wellness and occupational health service provider in collaboration with Mullah Labs, has set up a drive-through Covid-19 testing station at the stadium.

As cases in South Africa continue to increase at a worrying rate, with 927 as of Thursday afternoon, its COO, Dr Jedd Myers, explained the station would make access to testing easier.

HealthInsite, a corporate wellness and occupationa

lockdown, screening

HealthInsite, a corporate wellness and occupational health service provider in collaboration with Mullah Labs, has set up a drive-through Covid-19 testing station at the club. (Supplied)

The idea aimed to improve access and reduce the risk and spread of infection, Myers said, and for the company to contribute to "flattening the curve" in South Africa.

Criteria for testing

CORONAVIRUS FAQs | All your questions answered

He added the intention was not to test people out of convenience, but for those who meet the criteria for testing.

"The intention is to test people who are considered at risk, who are displaying symptoms and/or have been referred by their doctor."

At the site, healthcare workers dressed in full protective gear are at the ready to conduct quick and easy testing on the public.

Myers said the company was trying to play its part in fighting the global pandemic.

"This is an extraordinary experience we're going through as the human race, it's unparalleled in most of our lifetimes - I don't think we'll ever live through something like this again. I certainly hope not."

Unwilling to simply observe the impact of Covid-19 from the sidelines, Myers said the company had to get involved in a meaningful way.

"The people we work with are incredible people … they've really gone above and beyond and believe in what we're doing," he added.

People who are interested in getting tested at the station will be asked to remain in their cars while speaking to a professional.

Their hands and steering wheel will then be sanitised and they will be asked to complete some paperwork, including a contact list.

A swab will then be taken.

"The swab takes a couple of seconds and because it's a sensitive area of your anatomy, it's a bit uncomfortable but not painful," Myers said.

The swab will be transported to a SANAS-accredited laboratory where it will be analysed.

"Results can take anywhere between 48 and 72 hours, and the laboratory will communicate this to you either by email or telephonically through our contact centre."

The process is aligned with National Institute for Communicable Diseases guidelines and protocols, with positive results being referred as per the legal framework.

Myers said, however, the company's primary intention in this initiative was to have a broad impact on the crisis.

"My intention has always been to impact hundreds of thousands of lives … to create healthcare initiatives, strategies, processes and operations that would impact lives."

He added he hoped the station would be allowed to work throughout the lockdown period, which started at midnight on Thursday, as it was an essential service.

Beyond this, he is looking forward to expanding it throughout Gauteng and possibly South Africa.

Stay up to date and stay healthy. Subscribe to Health24’s Daily Dose newsletter for important updates on the spread of the coronavirus. Register and manage your newsletters in the new News24 app by clicking on the Profile tab

We live in a world where facts and fiction get blurred
In times of uncertainty you need journalism you can trust. For only R75 per month, you have access to a world of in-depth analyses, investigative journalism, top opinions and a range of features. Journalism strengthens democracy. Invest in the future today.
Subscribe to News24
Lockdown For
DAYS
HRS
MINS
Voting Booth
President Ramaphosa has punted the idea of mandatory Covid-19 vaccinations for South Africans. This is:
Please select an option Oops! Something went wrong, please try again later.
Results
The right thing to do. We desperately need more South Africans vaccinated to prevent further mutations and restore normality in our lives.
71% - 4967 votes
A risky strategy. Compulsory vaccinations may have unintended consequences and damage our rollout campaign.
29% - 1999 votes
Vote
Rand - Dollar
15.91
+1.7%
Rand - Pound
21.17
+1.7%
Rand - Euro
18.03
+1.3%
Rand - Aus dollar
11.34
+1.8%
Rand - Yen
0.14
+1.2%
Gold
1,772.51
-0.7%
Silver
22.81
-0.4%
Palladium
1,740.00
-3.3%
Platinum
941.09
-2.6%
Brent Crude
73.44
+1.0%
Top 40
64,064
+0.7%
All Share
70,475
+0.7%
Resource 10
67,251
+2.6%
Industrial 25
93,123
-0.8%
Financial 15
13,591
+1.0%
All JSE data delayed by at least 15 minutes Iress logo
Editorial feedback and complaints

Contact the public editor with feedback for our journalists, complaints, queries or suggestions about articles on News24.

LEARN MORE