The current crisis is merging beauty and wellness with health, forcing businesses to step in to fill the gaps where the government falls short. As the pandemic drags on, health care designers are thinking out of the box about more far-reaching changes. Scientists tell us testing, wearing masks, and social distancing are the key to containing this virus, and four months into the pandemic America is testing more than ever, but it is still far from being enough.
In March, Doug Satzman, XpresSpa Chief Executive Officer, said, “As the largest operator of health and wellness spas located within these US points of entry airports, we believe our facilities could be of great utility in helping our government test people as quickly as possible.”
He continued, “We believe we can help alleviate some of the long waits for travelers entering the US but we can also be available to test TSA employees, pilots, Flight Attendants and other airport personnel who are on the front lines helping to keep our nation safe.”
With 46 locations across 23 cities, many of which are located in point-of-entry cities such as New York City, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Chicago, Miami, Atlanta, and Washington, DC, XpresSpa is ideally situated to provide testing.
Last week XpresSpa Group announced, in conjunction with the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, and JFKIAT, the operator of Terminal 4 at John F. Kennedy International Airport, the opening of the XpresCheck at the Arrivals Hall at JFK International Airport’s Terminal 4, The pilot program, the first full-service COVID-19 screening and testing facility in a US airport, is now open to all JFK terminal employees, and will ensure that JFK workers have convenient access to COVID-19 and antibody testing at the airport.
The new modular XpresCheck facility holds nine separate testing rooms and has the capacity to screen up to 500 people per day. Testing will be available to all airport employees, including contractors, workers, concessionaires and their employees, TSA officers, and U.S. Customs and Border Protection agents. Both antibody testing and polymerase chain reaction (PCR) testing are available on-site, and the tests are sent to outside laboratories. All insurance plans are accepted outside of network and all information will remain private and HIPAA compliant.
“We are thrilled to launch our first pilot testing site at JFK Terminal 4, and we are hopeful that this will benefit airport workers,” Satzman said. “Together with JFKIAT and the Port Authority, we will support the safety and health of front-line airport workers and travelers as New York’s recovery plan takes form and plan to aggregate valuable testing data to share with the appropriate government agencies. Further, we hope to take learnings from this first pilot location to inform our expansion plans to other major airports in gateway cities.”
“The Port Authority is pleased to open the nation’s first COVID-19 and antibody testing facility for employees at JFK International Airport with JFKIAT and XpresSpa,” said Kevin O’Toole, Port Authority Chairman. “The agency will continue to enhance safety at its facilities by piloting the new technologies, programs, and policies needed to manage the impact of the coronavirus outbreak.”
Photo: Emily Rusch via Unsplash