UPDATE/New Location: Porter Hospital hosting more drive-through COVID-19 testing
UPDATE: On Friday the Middlebury location for the driveu-up COID testing changed to the Town Recreation Center off Creek Road in Middlebury.
Local Emergency Management Director Tom Hanley said the testing will be done outside in the back parking lot of the Rec Center, using the cocoa hut and another small structure as registration/check-in and testing site. People getting tested will be given instructions and they will administer the test themselves without ever getting out of their cars.
There is a great demand for COVID-19 testing right now, and Porter Hospital is expanding its drive-through testing sites, Tom Hanley, the Middlebury Police Chief and Local Emergency Management Director, reported in his Wednesday Emergency Management Bulletin.
Hanley offered the following things to know about COVID-19 testing.
• For testing to be of value, it should be scheduled appropriately. In other words, if coming into Vermont on quarantine, do not get tested on day 3, day 4, etc. For purposes of shortening quarantine, those tests have no value. You must wait until day 7 at least.
• If you have an illness or COVID symptoms, do not go to pop-up testing or the pod testing which has recently commenced at Porter. You must make an appointment with your healthcare provider, or any healthcare provider if you don’t have one. Failing that, call 2-1-1.
• If you go to register at a specific site and it’s listed as “FULL”, then it is full and probably won’t be able to accommodate a walk-in. Call 2-1-1.
• If you make an appointment for testing, make every effort to be there at the date and time. There are too many examples of no-shows at appointed times. This only keeps others from getting tested.
• Avoid constant repeat testing every week, especially if you’ve had no symptoms or had no at-risk exposure.
• Asymptomatic testing at pop-up sites does not require a health care provider’s referral.
Porter Hospital Expanded Testing
In partnership with the Vermont Department of Health and CIC Health, Porter Medical Center (PMC) was initially tagged as the place that would serve as a host site for expanded drive through testing operations seven days per week as a supplement to its existing testing programs, Hanley reports. This testing process — now slated for the town rec center — is the most ideal testing location for all asymptomatic patients, patients with known COVID-19 exposures or patients with recent travel, he wrote.
Please do not call Porter facilities for information on scheduling, testing or results. Patients may register and self-schedule on the Vermont Department of Health website. Vermont 211 is the best agency to answer any questions. Symptomatic patients should continue to follow the existing process and communicate with their primary care provider.
• Expanded Testing started Monday, Nov. 16
• This testing will be held 4 weekdays during afternoons, 1 weekday evening and both weekend days for 7 day/week testing options.
• Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday 1 p.m. – 5 p.m.
• Thursday 5 p.m. – 8 p.m.
• Saturday and Sunday 9 a.m. – 2 p.m.
• CIC will use PMC’s existing drive up testing center during the days/hours that PMC is not running its own testing operations.
Scheduling and Testing Procedure: (As hosts of expanded testing operations, PMC will not order, schedule, support specimen collection, analysis or result reporting/management.)
• Patients may register and self-schedule on the VDH website.
• The VDH/CIC testers can accommodate walk-ins even if the test schedule is full or patients are unable to schedule a test appointment.
• Anyone with questions regarding scheduling, testing, and results should contact 211 and NOT Porter Medical Center.
• Patients will follow the existing signage directing them to the testing personnel. Patients should remain in the vehicle for this drive-through testing location.
• Patients will be greeted by VDH/CIC staff as they enter the testing area.
• Swabs are Anterior Nares and will be self-collected by patients with direct observation by the staff.
• CIC staff will send them directly to Broad Lab via UPS/courier.
• Results are expected within 2-3 business days
• Results will flow into Care Evolve portal, which patients can access directly. Health care providers will not have access to this portal.
• Results will also flow to VDH and they will notify any positive cases
• Results will also eventually flow into Vermont Information Technology Leaders so health care providers can have access to findings.
• Primary Care Providers will not be directly notified of positive cases.