Photo by on Unsplash
Photo by on Unsplash

Tucsonan business owners large and small may have heard about corporate COVID-19 testing, but be wary of ineffective and unnecessary investments. Keep reading for more information about the value of COVID-19 testing and how it works.

COVID-19 testing – is it really worth it?

Employee testing for COVID-19 regularly has emerged as a powerful tool – not just for safety reasons, but because it helps businesses stay ahead of challenges presented by the pandemic.

While stopping the virus from entering the workplace seems an obvious advantage, additional shifts in strategies can help keep your operations running smoothly even if someone gets sick. For example, you can schedule workers in teams that regularly work together. If someone tests positive and employees have to isolate, you have a trained backup team ready to replace employees.

Legal liability considerations

Various local, state, and federal protections have been put in place conditionally since the start of the pandemic. Arizona recently joined the effort with Senate Bill 1377. What these laws have in common is a condition on that liability which states businesses and entities must demonstrate good faith efforts to operate in accordance with published guidance and health orders.

Going above and beyond those guidelines by utilizing employee testing can be powerful evidence in dealing with lawsuits from those claiming you haven’t been careful. While you may feel confident that your existing practices are safe from successful claims, it’s important to remember that litigation is expensive, and that having a good defense does not prevent someone from ignorantly or maliciously deciding to try their chances in court.

Making it known to employees and patrons that you regularly test for COVID may inspire someone looking to make a quick buck to find another business to target with frivolous claims.

Photo by Markus Winkler on Unsplash
Photo by Markus Winkler on Unsplash

Which tests are best to use for my business?

In order to choose the right testing option for you, it’s important to understand the various types of COVID-19 test options available.

  • RT-PCR: This test is the most common COVID-19 test available at public testing sites or from healthcare providers. Considered the “gold standard” in accuracy among COVID-19 tests, this test requires lab processing, meaning the fastest turnaround time for results is 48-72 hours, which makes it impractical for regular screening purposes.
  • Rapid antigen: This test boasts results with no lab processing in 15 minutes or less. It is less accurate than the RT-PCR, with an average false negative rate of 1 in 5, but because of its speed and ease of use, it still functions as a powerful tool for mass-testing purposes. This test is offered by many healthcare providers and is becoming standard use at workplaces and events in the New Normal.
  • Rapid Accula PCR: The Accula test provides both high accuracy and speedy results without the need for lab processing, offering results in 30 minutes or less. These tests are available from select healthcare providers and onsite medical testing services.

How can I start corporate testing at my business?

Businesses have two options when it comes to testing employees: acquiring and distributing DIY test kits, or hiring a testing service.

DIY kits

The first rapid antigen DIY kits have hit retail shelves after being approved for emergency use by the FDA in December 2020. Kits cost approximately $20-$40 depending on manufacturer. The tests come with supplies necessary to self-administer a test, along with instructions.

While this may seem simple enough, it’s important to remember that with new practices come new regulations surrounding employee testing for COVID-19. If you are a larger organization with a robust HR department, you may feel confident in your organization’s ability to navigate all the disclosures, forms, and waivers required by law.

If the level of time and energy required to administer tests is not a task your current management team can handle, you may wish to consider hiring a professional medical testing service.

Mobile COVID-19 testing services

If you are an employer looking for corporate testing in Tucson, consider a mobile COVID-19 medical testing service. These healthcare providers will send one or more nurses to your worksite or event to administer rapid COVID-19 tests to you and your employees.

They often offer packages that include assistance with navigating matters like required forms, or how to adhere to privacy laws when notifying staff about a positive case. Services also may offer progressive group discounts, as well as incentive discounts for ongoing contracts.

Whether you are a large corporation or a small family business, utilizing healthcare professionals as part of your COVID-19 safety plan will give both employees and patrons confidence that you are putting safety first.