For too long South Africans have been left in limbo over private COVID-19 testing. Inspired by a challenging Novel Coronavirus testing experience of our own & with the backing of big and small South African medical aids, Epicentre is stepping up.
We will be providing a high class testing service to provide testing where South African’s need it most; whether that’s people’s homes, or in their waiting vehicles outside one of our national offices. These COVID-19 test kits are administered & collected by COVID-19 trained and registered nurses in Johannesburg, Durban, and Cape Town.
When our families have COVID-19 symptoms or have been exposed, how do we actually get them tested? To say getting privately tested in South Africa for the Coronavirus is difficult is an understatement. Many doctors go pale when the virus is even spoken about. Yet testing is an internationally recognized by our CDC, WHO and Department of Health partner’s as a key weapon against the Coronavirus.
At Epicentre, a member of our team unfortunately came down with COVID-19 after his work in the community. Without a thought for his own safety, one of our managers put himself on the front lines to get much needed medical equipment to desperate clinics in the Western Cape. When he returned home sick, our team jumped into action and we placed him in self quarantine.
The Epicentre team as leading members of the health industry knew it was crucial that we get a formal diagnosis for John*. This was a priority for us because we not only wanted did we want to be sure that he would get the right treatment should he need it but also because we wanted to do our part to ensure our government would have up-to-date information on the statistics of infected South Africans.
We knew from our experience that we would have to collect a swab from John (an earbud with his saliva in a plastic container). Once we had his sample one of our team went to a private doctor that we had contacted and agreed to help us. We arrived at the doctor’s office with the sample in not one, but 2 plastic bags wrapped around the plastic container holding the swab.
When the team member arrived at the offices, the private doctor and his staff were very helpful but confused about what we were carrying around. As soon as our team member said COVID-19 everyone got very pale. What happened next was over so quickly; our team member suddenly found himself pushed outside and locked out. After 15 minutes of bargaining through a closed door, he was told to just leave the specimen on the doorstep.
Our story inspired us. We had experienced firsthand how people dependent on our country’s private sector were being left in the cold. There was a significant gap in COVID-19 private care.