Inside MUSC’s drive-through specimen collection site for COVID-19 testing

Local News

WEST ASHLEY, S.C. (WCBD) – On average, 300 patients a day drive through the MUSC Health’s respiratory specimen collection site to get tested.

Without ever having to leave the car, patients are first checked-in and then follow signs to the specimen collection tent.

Healthcare workers, fully covered in hazmat suits, reach through the car window and swab the inside of your nasal passage.

The specimen is then carefully sealed, refrigerated and later transported downtown Charleston to the main hospital to be tested.

It takes around 50 MUSC healthcare workers to run the collection site operation and six lanes of traffic continuously move patients through the area.

The collection site only tests patients within MUSC Health. You must have a referral and appointment before showing up. You can use MUSC’s free virtual care platform by clicking here. Make sure you use the promo code COVID19 when you log in.

The Emergency Manager for MUSC Health, Erik Modrzynski, says patients will get test results in 5 days.

At the collection site, safety and sanitizing are taken very seriously.

“We want our healthcare workers to be safe just as much as we want our patients to be safe. So, they get their vitals and get checked before they go in,” Modrzynski said. “We have a series of questions that they get asked, like if they are feeling well…the vitals get taken and we try to catch any abnormalities.”

MUSC Health says they are expecting a surge in patients requiring testing in coming weeks.

The MUSC Health respiratory specimen collection site is located at Citadel Mall in West Ashley.

Since opening in early March, approximately 4,000 patients have been tested at the site.

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Click for latest news and information