Quest Diagnostics announced on Saturday it has developed a program to ensure individuals who are the most vulnerable to COVID-19 have special VIP-level access to its 2,250 patient service centers across the United States.
The program, which will be available nationwide on Monday, will provide individuals who are 60 years or older or who have other health-related conditions known to raise the risk of unfavorable coronavirus outcomes, will have special access to the centers during the first hour of each day.
Quest said its centers are currently not accepting patients with suspected or confirmed COVID-19 symptoms and are not collecting specimens for testing. Concerned individuals who think they may have been exposed should contact their health provider directly, Quest said.
In addition, Quest said it has implemented other precautions in addition to regular deep cleaning. They include:
- Fostering social distancing by limiting the number of chairs in patient service centers to no more than 10;
- Where available, handing out hand-buzzers to patients after they register, allowing patients to return to their vehicles if they prefer until they are buzzed for their appointment;
- Staffing the doors of many centers with an escort to facilitate access.
“With the COVID-19 pandemic capturing global attention, it’s easy to forget that there are many patients who have significant health risks who require regular laboratory testing,” James E. Davis, executive vice president, general diagnostics, Quest Diagnostics, said. “Our ‘Peace of Mind’ program aims to give the most vulnerable patients access to laboratory testing in a safe, healthy environment. COVID-19 requires a team effort, and this is one step we at Quest are taking to foster a safe environment for all of us.”