Mobile Clinic Brings COVID-19 Testing to the Community of South Dade
Adults with COVID-19 symptoms can be tested by appointment
By Richard Westlund
A UHealth Pediatric Mobile Clinic with advanced telehealth features is now offering COVID-19 testing for adults at the South Dade Government Center in Cutler Bay. Individuals with coronavirus symptoms, such as high fever and breathing difficulties, can make an appointment for testing by calling 311 or 305-499-8767.
“We are shifting our medical resources to meet the community’s need, and will be at this site as long as necessary,” said Lisa Gwynn, D.O., M.B.A., associate professor of clinical pediatrics and public health sciences, and director of the Pediatric Mobile Clinic and the Dr. John T. Macdonald Foundation School Health Initiative.
Testing First Responders
Since April 5, the professional team from UHealth Pediatrics has been testing 250 to 300 adults per day, including police officers and other first responders who are on the front lines of the COVID-19 epidemic. Children are not being tested, in accordance with guidelines from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Meanwhile, a second UHealth mobile clinic that had been in standby mode is now providing pediatric screenings, vaccinations and other health and wellness services on the UM medical campus near the Mailman Center for Child Development.
The South Dade coronavirus testing is conducted in partnership with the Florida Department of Health, Miami-Dade County and Jackson Health System, with funding from the Children’s Health Fund, which has provided support for the Miller School’s Pediatric Mobile Clinic for more than 28 years. The clinic includes telehealth capabilities in its exam rooms, providing connectivity with UHealth specialists.
Training and Teamwork
Dr. Gwynn said the mobile and school health clinics have a rotating team of two physicians, 13 nurses, three nurse practitioners, two social workers, two patient navigators, a clinical psychologist and a project manager. This includes the state DOH testing site, the UHealth employee testing site, and screening sites at the pediatric buildings on the medical campus. The nurses were trained on proper procedures by infection control specialists. Despite school closures, the nurses have been able to be re-deployed in the community where they are needed, Dr. Gwynn said.
Currently, it takes several days for the COVID-19 test results to be available, and the team will also be responsible for contacting all the patients who are tested with results and will provide guidance for care and treatment.
“I’m very proud of our amazing UHealth team,” Dr. Gwynn said. “They are truly dedicated to serving our community in this ongoing health crisis.”