I’ve been an Emergency Room Doctor at Cape Cod Hospital since 1994. This past July after 26 years in the ER, I stepped away to spend more time with my family and enjoy the Cape.
This past spring I witnessed firsthand the devastating effects of COVID-19 and it was clear that this was not the “flu”. During the summer as the virus seemed to recede the medical community knew that this was simply the eye of the storm. I feared the combination of school openings and the onset of colder weather would optimize the virus spread.
With that in mind and the fact that my wife and I have 2 kids in the Nauset School system I volunteered to be part of Nauset’s COVID-19 Task Force for Reopening. As school opening approached, it was unclear that the mitigation efforts being put in place would be effective in preventing viral spread within the school system. Fortunately, due to the efforts of the Nauset leadership and the Nauset Schools Nurse Coordinator, Mary Ellen Reed, the mitigation measures have been effective. There has been no evidence of ongoing spread of COVID-19 within the system as the in-school cases have entered via community spread. This is further proof that with high compliance of masks, distancing and strict hand hygiene we can stop the spread of the virus.
As the fall progressed into winter I was frequently contacted about how to get tested. Much to my amazement and as the rate of COVID-19 increased, it was more and more difficult to find avenues for rapid testing. Even I, a well-connected physician, could not reliably advise people on the best path for getting a test in a timely fashion. My frustration grew, prompting me to take the initiative to offer an additional path for the Cape Cod community to obtain a COVID-19 test.
I am committed to the principle that same day results are a key component of testing. Therefore, we will rely on rapid antigen and molecular testing as the backbone of our testing platform. There may be times due to supply chain issues that we will need to resort to PCR testing. Additionally, since Nauset Testing is not accepting insurance I will make every effort to keep testing prices as low as possible.
- Wear A Mask
- Social Distance
- Aggressive Hand Hygiene
— Robert Malin, MD