The Teton County Health Department, in partnership with St. John’s Health, will begin COVID-19 surveillance testing for businesses next week beginning Monday, August 24, 2020. Seventy-three businesses are currently enrolled in the program, including first responder agencies, nonprofits, retail, tour operators, restaurants and more. In our initial weeks of testing up to 500 individuals will be randomly selected to test using a cheek swab test. The surveillance testing is being offered for free to businesses and employees through funding from the CARES Act and is completely voluntary.
Surveillance testing is for people without symptoms. Teton County Health Director Jodie Pond stated, “This is good for the community because it will enable us to better understand how COVID-19 is currently affecting our community. Surveillance testing will aid us to identify people who are asymptomatic and presymptomatic. Early detection is essential to containing COVID-19 in Teton County.”
This early detection, if an employee is positive, will assist in preventing COVID-19 infections to other employees and customers. Without this early detection, the closures and impacts on businesses would be far more profound.
Surveillance testing will take place Teton County Fairgrounds Exhibit Hall at 350 W Snow King Ave. The Exhibit Hall is across from the Fairgrounds on the South side of Snow King Ave. There will be signage outside directing people where to go. Staff that are randomly selected each week will be sent a link to sign up electronically for a time to come get tested. Individuals scheduled for testing will stay in their cars throughout the process. Appointments will be available from Monday and Wednesday from 8:30am-4:30pm and from 8:30am-5:30pm on Tuesday and Thursday.
The results will be returned to the individual electronically, as well as to the Teton County Health Department. They will not be released to the employers. If somebody tests positive, then Teton County Health Department will begin the contact tracing process.
It’s not too late for businesses to enroll in Teton County’s Surveillance testing. Please email Kristen Trivelli at firstname.lastname@example.org.