This is a business decision, but the better practices are equipped to handle these cases and manage their own patients, the better for everyone. The health departments are currently overwhelmed with handling patients. Independent physicians performing their own testing for their patients provides more flexibility for ordering testing than health department or state labs. It also provides better management of potentially infected patients.
If you decide as a practice to start testing, we would recommend first to connect with your vendor for arranging for supplies and specimen collection technique and processing. LabCorp has resources on their website that cover specimen collection and address questions about testing.
We would also recommend that you consider drive-through testing. This would minimize potential exposures in your office setting. The person performing the specimen collection would need to wear appropriate personal protective equipment—inclusive of mask, gown, gloves, and goggles or face shield.
Some practices are implementing patient self-testing. See one of our member practice’s COVID-19 Toolkits for an example of a patient self-testing process. You can also check the CDC for updated information on testing.
Here are some additional resources that may be helpful as you make your decision:
- COVID-19 Patient Workflow Chart
- Curi Patient Test Screening Tool
- Curi Partner Webinar: Response and Preparedness Plan for Primary Care Physicians
- Curi Partner Toolkit: COVID-19 Toolkit for Independent Primary Care Providers