Early Results of Safely Opening Schools Pilot Shows How Schools Can Safely Reopen
March 16, 2021, SAN FRANCISCO, CA – Primary.Health, a software company that organizes, streamlines, and automates COVID-19 testing and vaccination programs, has facilitated more than 3,000 tests as part of its participation in the Safely Opening Schools (SOS) pilot implemented to date in 8 high-need California school districts. Today, early results from the pilot were released by the Public Health Institute, finding a very low positivity rate of 0.21 percent, indicating that onsite testing is an important tool for schools to be able to reopen.
“Our equity-based approach to school testing is a critical tool to help urban and rural, large and small school districts to safely reopen,” said Andrew Kobylinski, CEO and co-founder of Primary.Health. “It is inspiring to see community organizations come together and take action to support the safe return of California students and teachers to school.”
The 8-week SOS pilot, developed to support the safer reopening of elementary schools serving historically marginalized communities, consists of twice a week testing of all on-site students and staff members using the Abbot BinaxNOW’s rapid antigen test. SOS is a program of the Public Health Institute, working in close coordination with the California Department of Public Health (CDPH), with major funding coming from The California Endowment.
“Our experience is showing that use of rapid testing at schools is feasible and can help build the confidence of parents and school staff in the safety of reopening,” said Lynn Silver, MD, director, SOS program, Public Health Institute. “This measured approach, along with other recommended safety precautions, allows schools to quickly identify and isolate people who are infectious and would not have otherwise realized it, preventing the spread as kids head back to in-person learning.”
Learnings from the pilot program will be used to finetune the schools testing process, develop and share best practices with California educators and school health professionals, and set an example for returning kids back to school safely.
Primary.Health launched in March 2020 and has powered more than 600 COVID-19 testing sites in 13 states, with onsite testing times averaging less than two minutes per person and 60+ vaccine sites averaging 48 doses per hour, with less than four minutes from check-in to vaccine administration.
The Primary.Health platform allows governments, school districts, homeless shelters, and employers to safely reopen through affordable, convenient, and efficient testing and vaccination. Primary’s health equity tools, “no dose wasted” features, and real-time data analytics on take-up rates, demographic breakdowns, and capacity planning will facilitate mass vaccination at a scale that has never been done before in a cost-effective and smooth manner.
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Primary.Health is the engine behind your COVID-19 testing and vaccination programs. Our web-based platform provides government agencies, schools, healthcare facilities, and community-based organizations the ability to quickly register participants, schedule appointments, arrange for easy on-site check-in and check-out, and exchange data between labs and state databases, easing the reporting process.
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