COVID-19 Testing And Preparedness At Premier Health

Roberto Colon, MD, vice president of quality at Premier Health, answers questions about coronavirus testing and the readiness of Premier Health hospitals to treat patients diagnosed with COVID-19.

Do any Premier Health hospitals have the ability to test someone for coronavirus? 

Starting Friday, April 3, Premier Health in conjunction with CompuNet Clinical Laboratories began offering local coronavirus testing for hospitalized patients. Testing is limited based on the Ohio Department of Health’s guidance which prioritizes patients who receive the COVID-19 testing. Hospitalized patients and symptomatic health care workers are considered priority one and will be the first group to receive this test. Local test access is expected to shorten turnaround times for test results to 24 to 48 hours for hospitalized patients.

Is testing available for non-hospitalized patients?

At this time, our hospitals do not offer walk-in COVID-19 tests.

In partnership with the University of Dayton, the Premier Health, Fidelity Health Care, and CompuNet team continues to provide drive-up collection services at UD Arena, 1801 Edwin C. Moses Blvd.,  one of the longest running collection sites in Ohio.

This site offers a process to collect specimens only from patients who have a physician order with them for a COVID-19 test to be performed. Those who visit the site with a physician’s order will be checked to see if they have a fever and other symptoms consistent with COVID-19. Those who are asymptomatic might not be tested, even if they have a physician’s order. 

Hours of Operation

  • Monday - Friday: open 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. (subject to change)​

Check back for updates on future testing times. 

To ensure an orderly process, it is vitally important that those who have symptoms that are consistent with the COVID-19 virus first contact their family physician or primary care provider and work with their provider’s office to see if they meet certain criteria before they come to the collection site. If you do not have a physician’s order, you will not be screened.

The test can be ordered by physicians or an authorized health care provider. It is highly recommended that providers follow the Center for Disease Control and Prevention’s protocol for determining whether testing for the novel coronavirus is needed for a particular patient.

CompuNet will collect and forward specimens as appropriate to its reference laboratory, Quest Diagnostics, for COVID-19 testing.

Are Premier Health hospitals set up to hold and treat a patient if someone came in and was positive for coronavirus?

Yes, all Premier Health hospitals are fully capable of evaluating and treating any patient with COVID-19. Our specialists in infectious diseases, pulmonary care, critical care, and internal medicine are prepared to treat the symptoms and comorbidities that often are present in COVID-19 cases, and we have the necessary equipment and facilities (such as specially equipped negative-pressure rooms) to provide not only a comfortable, healing environment for COVID-19 patients, but also for other patients. An interdisciplinary planning team across Premier Health is proactively working in response to the virus, and meetings are occurring regularly to address the necessary precautions to prevent the spread of the coronavirus.

What other steps is Premier Health taking to prepare to treat patients with COVID-19?

Premier Health’s clinicians are well prepared to accurately screen for risk of COVID-19 and respond immediately to prevent further spread, and we are ready to identify, isolate, and treat any potential patients who seek care at our facilities. We are in contact with local and state health officials as well as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and our staff is following the latest guidance from these public health agencies so that patients affected by COVID-19 will be able to get the care they need while we protect the health and safety of our associates.

Our teams have considered escalating responses to react to further increases in community cases. Additional visitor restrictions may be implemented as the situation requires to prevent further spread. We have established protocols to triage patients at hospital entry points, as well as a process for safely moving patients through the facility while in isolation.