Edmond’s wellness clinics

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Boston Globe via Getty Images

Rachel Weathers, Memorial Editor

With COVID-19 cases continuing to rise throughout the state, access to testing has become increasingly vital. In an effort to identify the spread of the virus and determine if someone has it, Edmond Public Schools (EPS) has partnered with Total Wellness. This will provide rapid response COVID-19, flu and strep throat tests to students, employees and their families.

There are currently two wellness clinic hubs in the district located at Edmond Memorial and at the EPS custodial department. EPS has plans to open 14 or more sites across the district for individuals to be tested at their respective schools. As of Oct. 27, close to 1,000 students, staff and their relatives have been tested through Edmond’s Total Wellness clinics. 

“The medical hub is open five days a week (except for school holidays). Students, parents and staff can drop in for testing anytime between 8 a.m.- 4 p.m.,” Edmond Memorial Assistant Principal Sally Stewart said. 

Each hub allows for convenient testing if one is symptomatic and each visit includes a teleconference with a physician.

“When an employee or student has symptoms, they can visit one of our hubs, meet with a doctor through a telehealth visit and be tested for COVID-19, flu or strep throat,” EPS Associate Superintendent Randy Decker said. “The doctor is able to prescribe medicine at a pharmacy.”

There are several benefits of in school testing hubs, one of them being the ability to receive test results in 15 minutes. This is a large decrease in wait time compared to other testing services, which can take over a week for results to come back.

“Wait time for results is much less than going to the health department and waiting nine days for results,” Stewart said. “This in turn can help us reduce the spread of the virus here at school and between homes of our students by quick responses to testing.”

Some individuals are already seeing the advantages of having the clinic in the school.

“Having the clinic on site makes it much quicker and easier for testing and to identify hot spots,” Human Anatomy teacher Chris Lowery said. 

Each hub allows EPS students and teachers to have better peace of mind and a healthier school setting. 

“One of the ways we can create a safer environment, due to COVID-19, is to identify symptomatic students and employees, have them tested quickly and remove them from the school environment until they are well,” Decker said. 

Testing allows schools to better track the spread of COVID-19 around the building and throughout the district.

“Results of this test are provided to the school for record-keeping purposes. With the test result, we are able to assist the parent in understanding the quarantine and isolation guidelines that have been set out by the CDC,” Stewart said. “The test results will determine the student’s return-to-school date.”

Contact Rachel Weathers at [email protected]