WellNow Urgent Care — one of the country’s fastest-growing urgent providers — has launched a new in-vehicle triage process in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Effective immediately, patients will be asked to complete an in-vehicle check-in process before entering a WellNow Urgent Care facility. This new procedure is a precautionary measure to help reduce the spread of the virus.
“WellNow Urgent Care continues to analyze and evaluate our procedures during this pandemic to help ensure the health and safety of our patients and providers,” said WellNow Urgent Care President John Radford, M.D. “Using an in-vehicle triaging process allows our providers to evaluate and make real-time decisions on patients whose symptoms may be consistent with COVID-19 — helping us reduce the transmission of illness. So far, it’s being very well received by both our staff and communities.”
As part of the procedure, all WellNow facilities have a sign on the doors noting triage instructions. Prior to entering the facility patients are required to answer two questions:
1. Are you experiencing fever, cough or shortness of breath?
2. Have you had potential exposure to someone confirmed positive for coronavirus (COVID-19)?
Patients that answer “yes” to either question are instructed to use their mobile devices to scan the QR code or type in the URL on the sign to complete check-in and then wait in their vehicle for a text with further instructions on entering the facility. The technology allows for two-texting, ensuring clear communication between patients and staff. Patients having difficulty checking in online may call the facility directly to be checked in over the phone while they wait in their vehicle. Only those patients that answer “no” to both questions may check-in inside the facility.
This new measure follows on this weekend’s expansion of WellNow’s telehealth platform, WellNow Virtual Medical. The platform uses a secure, HIPAA-compliant, web-based platform, so patients can be seen by a WellNow provider via virtual consultation from any smart device. Ailments such as allergies, coughs, fevers, sinus infections and more can all be treated and diagnosed through the platform — 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
“We understand people are unsure if they should leave home to get care right now,” continued Radford. “In-vehicle triage and the expansion of WellNow Virtual Medical are the latest ways our team is stepping up to provide access to even more distancing between patients IN this crisis. We hope these necessary steps will help to reassure our communities they don’t have to delay getting quality medical care.”
All WellNow locations continue to provide timely treatment for non-life-threatening injuries and illnesses, such as sprains, strains, colds and the flu, while also providing on-site X-rays, lab testing, and physicals. Patients are treated on a walk-in basis but may also check-in online or view up-to- date facility wait times directly on the company’s homepage. WellNow welcomes most insurance, including Medicare, Medicaid, Fidelis and Veterans Affairs TriWest. A full list of services and hours can be found online.
WellNow Urgent Care operates more than 40 locations across New York and Illinois. The company projects to open 20 new facilities in 2020 across the two states.