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Momentum Metropolitan Holdings partners with Gift of the Givers for COVID-19 drive through testing facility

Published: Apr 3, 2020 7:05:00 AM South Africa Standard Time

South African non-profit organisation Gift of the Givers has announced a partnership with Momentum Metropolitan Holdings to establish a drive-through testing facility at its Cape Town regional head office in Bellville. The building’s open-top parking lot will be turned into a drive through testing facility to provide safe and efficient testing for the COVID-19 virus following President Cyril Ramaphosa’s announcement on Monday, 30 March to elevate the efforts in testing communities to aggressively flatten the curve of the pandemic.

This make-shift testing centre is one of seven in the country and aims to help alleviate the immense pressure that has been placed on healthcare facilities and laboratories across South Africa since the outbreak in early March. The testing service will operate from 9am to 4pm, Monday to Friday and will cost R750 per patient, which is the average price of testing in the private healthcare sector.

“The number of positive COVID-19 patients continues to increase and as such, healthcare facilities and laboratories are under immense pressure to keep up with the testing and diagnosing of potential positive COVID-19 patients. This partnership will make access to testing easier and, most importantly, safer in the comfort of your car,” says Imtiaz Sooliman, Chairman and Founder of Gift of the Givers.

The testing facility will work on a strict appointment only basis to avoid testing delays and overcrowding and to maintain strict operational and safety protocols. No walk-ins will be permitted and appointments can be made by calling 0800 786 911. After the appointment has been confirmed, the following steps need to be followed:

  • On arrival at the first boom gate, the person will need to produce their reference number and appointment time to the Gift of the Givers member.
  • Thereafter, the person will be directed to the second boom gate where their hands will be sanitised, a mask and pair of gloves will be given to them, along with their form and a pen.
  • They will then be moved to a holding area.
  • As soon as the tester is ready for the person they will then be directed to the gazebo where the actual swab will be taken while the person is in the car.
  • At no time will people be allowed out of their cars, making the process that much more convenient and safer for everyone.

The swab will then be delivered to a SANAS-accredited laboratory where it will be analysed. Patients will receive their test results by SMS, telephone or email within 48 to 96 hours after doing the test. Should a patient test positive, they will be referred to their doctor for further treatment and possible triage.

“As Momentum Metropolitan, we are doing all we can to play our part and contribute to flattening the curve and reducing the spread of COVID-19 in South Africa. We have invested in various initiatives in the fight against COVID-19, including partnering with government and the National Department of Health to provide financial support to the value of R5 million and our Hello Doctor (24/7) telehealth service that gives all South Africans access to doctors in all official languages at absolutely no cost to the user,” says Damian McHugh, Health Executive at Momentum Health Solutions.

To qualify for testing, patients need to meet one of the following four criteria:

  • Contact with a laboratory-confirmed COVID-19 case
  • Having travelled to a high-risk country or area
  • Showing signs and symptoms of COVID-19
  • Having been referred by a doctor.

“This process is fully compliant with the National Institute for Communicable Diseases (NICD) guidelines and protocols to fully reduce the risk of contamination and spread. We are thankful that Momentum Metropolitan Holdings has partnered with us to establish this vital testing facility in our fight against COVID-19,” concludes Sooliman.

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