FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
July 7, 2020
County Health System continues to provide more testing of county residents than any other health system
Santa Clara County, CA – Today, the County of Santa Clara published a new online dashboard tracking COVID-19 testing by large healthcare systems and their clinics, including the County of Santa Clara Health System, Kaiser Permanente, Palo Alto Medical Foundation/Sutter Health, El Camino Health, Stanford Healthcare, and HCA Healthcare, which includes Regional Medical Center of San Jose and Good Samaritan Hospital. The dashboard shows the rate and count tests performed by these systems in the past week. The dashboard illustrates that the County Health System--which includes Santa Clara Valley Medical Center (VMC) Hospitals and Clinics, pop-up VMC-operated testing sites, and testing of highest-risk populations by Valley Homeless HealthCare Program and the Public Health Department--continues to supply much of the testing to County residents.
A June 10 order by the County Health Officer required all large healthcare systems in Santa Clara County to offer COVID-19 testing to specific individuals covered by their systems. Many of these large healthcare systems were already making testing available to their patients, but the order requires testing of those who are symptomatic, contacts of known cases, and front-line workers. All large healthcare systems in the county need to provide this level of care to those they serve. We are heartened to see that healthcare systems are starting to provide increased testing, but more work is ahead.
This order is one of the first in the nation implementing this requirement for healthcare systems, some of which had previously been directing some of their members to get tested at government-operated sites that do not charge the patient or bill their insurance. Higher testing rates help the Public Health Department notify and support those who test positive, and anyone who may have been exposed. Negative and positive results inform the Health Officer about how the virus is affecting our community. The June 10 order made previous recommendations about testing issued on May 15 by the County mandatory for large healthcare systems.
Santa Clara County benefits from a high level of health insurance coverage among residents, with more than a million residents covered by these large healthcare systems, which is an opportunity to ensure that everyone who needs a COVID-19 test receives testing. Information on COVID-19 testing in the County is available at sccfreetest.org.
The new dashboard is available at https://www.sccgov.org/sites/covid19/Pages/dashboard-testing.aspx.
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