Program aims to increase protections for staff and community

Henrico County has begun offering COVID-19 testing to first responders and other frontline employees regardless of whether they show symptoms of the disease.

Officials are hoping to strengthen protections for these workers and the community as well as increase understanding of how the virus spreads without carriers exhibiting the common symptoms of a high fever, a dry cough or shortness of breath.

“There’s tremendous uncertainty around COVID-19,” said Jackson Baynard, Henrico’s emergency manager. “There’s uncertainty around who’s been exposed to the disease. There’s uncertainty organizationally, family wise and individually. We have to look for opportunities to gain more information.”

The testing kicked off at a drive-thru clinic provided by DOCS Health, which stretches across a parking lot at Virginia Center Commons. About 200 individuals have been tested, with an additional 400 registered.

“For almost three decades, DOCS has tirelessly delivered high-quality care in different settings for many populations; especially those who serve on the frontline of our military community throughout the country, said Dr. Larry Caplin, CEO and Founder of DOCS Health. “We see our partnership with Henrico County as an extension of that work: to take care of our healthcare workers and others serving on the frontline of this health crisis; assisting those in this community who are impacted by this pandemic.”

We applaud the heroic efforts of all of the medical and nursing staff, emergency management teams, and the individuals who are screening, testing, and providing guidance and coordination on the ground. We are here to serve alongside of the leaders of this community to help ensure those who need the care can receive it.