Capital Region medical group adds testing site in Latham

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NEW YORK, NY – MARCH 28: A doctor administers a coronavirus swab test at a drive-thru testing center for coronavirus at Lehman College on March 28, 2020 in the Bronx, New York City. The center, opened March 23 at Lehman College, can test up to 500 people per day for COVID-19. (Photo by John Moore/Getty Images)

LATHAM, N.Y. (NEWS10) — Community Care Physicians announced the opening of a new drive-up, mobile coronavirus testing site in Latham, available by appointment only starting Monday.

COVID-19 testing has so far happened mostly at local hospitals, but the shortage of supplies has severely restricted testing for the community. CCP has established a new outdoor, drive-thru testing center at its flagship location in the Capital Region Health Park, 713 Troy-Schenectady Road. All coronavirus testing within the CCP network will be funneled to appointments at that location.

“CCP worked with our commercial labs to aggressively stand up our own testing facility for CCP patients as rapidly as we could to help the hospitals and the community.”

Joan Hayner, CPA, CMPE, Chief Operations Officer of CCP

However, the test site does not offer broad, open testing for everyone in the area. For now, given global supply shortages, the Latham test site will focus only on current, established CCP patients.

Patients must be symptomatic and fall into what the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention consider high-risk—meaning those over 64-years-old, with underlying conditions, or the immunocompromised, first responders, or health care workers.

The typical CCP patient is assessed by their primary care provider to determine whether further testing is necessary. Telehealth solutions throughout the CCP network let doctors examine patients remotely to figure out if COVID-19 testing is necessary. Patients need an order from a CCP provider to be tested, and only then can a patient schedule an appointment.

“COVID-19 has caused us to prioritize who needs to be seen face-to-face to minimize our patients’ risks. Now with telehealth, many of these appointments can be handled using video/audio on your phone or computer. This is critical for continuity of care so patients don’t experience issues down the road. It also takes pressure off our hospitals and emergency rooms who can focus on sicker patients. We don’t know exactly when this crisis will end, and we want to be sure patients receive the care they need now.”

Joan Hayner

However, those who are not CCP-affiliated can still take advantage of the new service.

CCP is a massive medical group in the region, counting over 80 practices in Albany, Columbia, Greene, Montgomery, Rensselaer, Saratoga, Schenectady, and Warren Counties under its umbrella. Although the network boasts a broad reach in the Capital Region community—CCP counts 370,000 patients from all its member organizations, roughly one out of every four people in the area—many individuals are not CCP patients, automatically eligible for service at the new testing site.

At CCP’s two Urgent Care Centers—at 711 Troy-Schenectady Road, Suite 102 in Latham and at 391 Myrtle Avenue in Albany—medical providers will evaluate patients to determine whether testing is required for influenza, strep throat, or the coronavirus. Anyone can walk in to be seen at these Urgent Care Centers.

Provided you are symptomatic and fit the CDC’s high-risk criteria for testing, these two spots serve as points of entry for non-CCP patients to be included in its system, and meeting their corona testing requirements.

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