SALT LAKE CITY — University of Utah Health announced Friday it will now move to appointment-only COVID-19 testing. Previously, those who wished to be tested had the option to simply appear at a hospital facility without an appointment.
Officials believe the change to appointments with no drive-up availability will reduce wait times and relieve staff stress.
During the transition away from the drive-up without an appointment testing option, U of U Health will expand weekday hours from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. beginning Monday.
“Cars get through our tents in three minutes on average." said Richard Orlandi, MD, chief medical officer of ambulatory health at U of U Health. "Nonetheless, increasing case counts have led to long waits that are difficult and frustrating for everyone. We’re confident this adjustment will ultimately lead to better efficiency and satisfaction for everyone.”
U of U Health provides the less-invasive saliva testing option rather than tests that use swabs wiped inside the nose.
“The change provides the same testing capacity but with a more organized approach to allow patients to be evaluated appropriately.” said Orlandi.
Appointments at U of U Health can be made online 48 hours in advance for any of its in-car testing locations, including South Jordan, Redwood and Farmington Health Centers.