Media Contacts

Kylene Metzger

Media Relations Specialist, Public Affairs

Sep 25, 2020 9:00 AM

From the start of the COVID-19 pandemic in Utah, University of Utah Health has tested more than 193,000 patients at its testing sites and has continued to work to improve patient care. Since then, U of U Health and ARUP collaborated to provide high-quality COVID-19 testing by offering patients a less invasive option through self-collected saliva. Most recently, patients were provided the option to make reservations to avoid long wait times. In continuance of U of U Health’s commitment to providing the best quality of health care, the system is now moving to an appointment-only requirement for COVID-19 testing.

To accommodate the transition to appointment-only testing, U of U Health will expand weekday COVID-19 testing hours from 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. beginning September 28th. “The change in testing hours will allow appointments to be spread more efficiently over a longer period of time and to ultimately reduce waiting,” says Richard Orlandi, MD, chief medical officer of ambulatory health at University of Utah Health. “The change provides the same testing capacity but with a more organized approach to allow patients to be evaluated appropriately.” 

Patients can schedule a COVID-19 test appointment at one of U of U Health’s in-car testing sites (South Jordan, Redwood, and Farmington Health Centers). The online appointment scheduling feature allows patients to view testing availability at all U of U Health testing sites and choose the option that’s most convenient for them. An appointment can be scheduled up to 48 hours in advance. Patients without an appointment will be redirected to come back when an appointment is confirmed.

The change will:

  • Reduce wait times
  • Provide opportunities for patients to be evaluated in the event additional medical interventions are needed
  • Reduce stress on clinical staff
  • Provide more overall efficiency to the testing program

“During our service hours, a COVID-19 test is administered every minute,” Orlandi says. “Cars get through our tents in three minutes on average. 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.”

Patients can schedule a COVID-19 test appointment in the following ways:

  • A current patient can schedule an appointment through MyChart or the MyChart app.
  • A patient who does not have MyChart can schedule an appointment online.
  • Patients can call U of U Health’s coronavirus hotline; however, because of high volumes at the call center, patients may experience a long wait time, so we encourage patients to schedule online whenever possible.

Criteria for testing has not changed. Those who schedule a COVID-19 test appointment time will be asked a series of questions to determine whether a test is needed.

coronavirus COVID-19 testing appointment