Gritman Medical Center is working in partnership with local, regional and state officials to respond to the rise in COVID-19 positive cases being identified in our region. At the time of this release on July 6, Public Health-Idaho North Central District (PH-INCD) was reporting 21 confirmed positive cases and 5 probable cases in Latah County. While positive cases had remained stable in the county for some time, they have now doubled in under a week. In addition, several local businesses have reported temporary closures due to COVID-19 exposure.
As part of our response to better protect and serve patients and public health, Gritman is changing our COVID-19 test (PCR live virus test) procedures effective immediately:
- All COVID-19 tests require an order from a doctor or health care provider: Individuals who are concerned they have symptoms of COVID-19 or believe they have had exposure to a known positive person should call their primary care provider or one of our clinics — including QuickCARE — to be evaluated for testing. Many appointments are being conducted conveniently by telemedicine and do not require an office visit. But you must call first — you may need to leave a message but your call will be returned. We appreciate your patience.
- Gritman has established a COVID-19 Drive-Through Testing Site: The site is located at the Gritman Martin Wellness Center, 510 W. Palouse River Drive, Moscow, ID 83843. The hours of operation are 8 a.m. – 4 p.m. Monday-Friday. These hours are subject to change as this is a rapidly evolving situation. We are asking the public to use the Drive-Through Testing Site for all COVID-19 test collection and not come to the hospital unless you need to be seen in our Emergency Department. The hospital is open for all regular scheduled services and procedures.
- Requirements to receive a COVID-19 test: Patients must have in their possession: 1) A valid physician order for a COVID-19 test if the order was not submitted electronically to Gritman — most orders are sent electronically; 2) a valid photo identification; and 3) insurance information (note that you do not have to be insured to be tested). As this service is drive-through only, all persons must remain in their vehicle at all times while following the directional signs and instructions provided by our care team.
- Patients with Pre-Surgery or Pre-Clinic Orders: Patients who have a scheduled procedure or clinical visit that requires an advance COVID-19 test must also use the Drive-Through Testing Site. Please bring your physician’s order for the COVID-19 test (if it was not sent electronically to Gritman), a valid photo identification and your insurance information with you.
At this time, Gritman is conducting two types of COVID-19 tests:
- COVID-19 PCR (polymerase chain reaction) tests are collected with a nasopharyngeal swab and are used to detect the presence of the live SARS-CoV-2 (COVID-19) virus. This test requires an order from a physician. To date, Gritman has collected over 1,400 COVID-19 PCR tests.
- COVID-19 antibody tests are collected through a blood draw and are used to detect the presence of antibodies in the blood. “Antibodies are an indication of having been previously exposed to the SARS-CoV-2 (COVID-19) virus,” said Dr. John Brown, Gritman Chief Medical Officer. “As this is a new virus, the medical community is uncertain about the meaning of COVID-19 antibody test results. At this time, the presence of antibodies does not guarantee a person has immunity to COVID-19. In addition, some people who have previously tested positive for COVID-19 have no antibodies detected in their blood after a period of time. The medical community is prioritizing COVID-19 PCR tests at this time as they are fundamental to detecting and controlling the spread of the disease.” This test requires an order from a physician.
Moscow Family Medicine (Downtown, Westside and QuickCARE): 208-882-2011
Vandal Health: 208-885-6693
Internal Medicine: 208-883-1152
Kendrick Family Care: 208-289-3841
Potlatch Family Care: 208-875-2380
Troy Clinic: 208-835-5550