Omaha urgent care works to mitigate COVID-19 spread with drive-through testing

OMAHA, Neb. (WOWT) -- Things can get out of hand for a small business trying to adapt to the times, one health care provider was overwhelmed Tuesday when word got out about a drive-thru medical clinic.

The people who own this urgent care only have a handful of practices, so they can't risk their employees getting sick and having to stay home. A new drive-through set up is their answer to keeping everyone in the situation safe.

"If we have a clinic that gets exposed, our small business is exposed as well as...pardon me...risking our staff and their families."

It’s a dilemma for all health care providers. If a worker gets sick, people can't get the care they need… so they’re doing this.

"That's something we work with every day...I'm sorry...and we have to take care of everyone we can."

To do this, they separate patients with respiratory illnesses from everyone else. And we stress – it’s by appointment only.

Anyone with a respiratory illness will be directed to a nearby clinic. There you can test you for flu, strep, and COVID-19 if your symptoms are eligible for testing according to the CDC guidelines.

"Most people don't need a COVID test. They need to manage their symptoms at home and self-isolate and everything will be okay for about 80% of the patients."

This is new for Omaha urgent care and like all small businesses, they're learning as they go, but they are working to expand their respiratory illness testing by opening a drive-through at their Bellevue clinic.

They have done three COVID-19 tests in the last two days but their supplies are limited. They say to make sure they are using them on the right people they are using strict CDC guidelines.