Travelers seeking a COVID-19 test prior to air travel have a new option beginning this Wednesday, Nov. 4, 2020, when Discovery Health MD starts offering testing at Sea-Tac Airport (SEA), the Port of Seattle announced Monday.
The pilot program will run through Jan. 31, 2021.
Testing will occur in the central auditorium at SEA, located pre-security, on the mezzanine level above ticketing and the security checkpoints.
Results will be available by 5 p.m. the day following testing.
“Historically, we’ve received results by 9 a.m. the day following an appointment, but labs may be delayed for multiple reasons and timelines cannot be guaranteed,” Discovery Health MD says on its website.
Here’s more from the Port:
“Our team is committed to your health and well-being as well as to being responsive to the evolving needs of travelers during the pandemic,” said SEA Managing Director Lance Lyttle. “Offering COVID-19 testing at the airport is a critical step for restoring air travel and our economy. It is one part of our layered and comprehensive response that embrace the most effective methods proven to stop the spread of COVID-19.”
The testing is done by appointment and limited to ticketed passengers up to 72 hours prior to travel. Testing is available seven days a week from 7 a.m. to 2 p.m. Hours are subject to change and limited on the first day of operations on Nov. 4 from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Travelers must schedule appointments online.
The cost is $250 for COVID-19 PCR lab tests, and results are delivered with same- and next-day options. Same day test results are available for travelers whose tests are administered before 9:15 a.m., Monday through Friday. Results should be available before midnight that day. Travelers whose tests are administered after 9:15 a.m., Monday through Friday, or on Saturday and Sunday, should receive results the following business day.
If a passenger tests positive, Public Health and the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) will be notified. A member of Discovery Health MD’s medical staff will also contact the passenger to advise to self-isolate for at least 10 days and to notify close contacts for 48 hours prior to the positive test or development of symptoms and request that they self-quarantine for 14 days.
“We are excited to bring COVID-19 testing services to SEA and offer travelers convenience, our proven experience, and consistent protocols that keep everyone safe,” says Dr. Ann Jarris, CEO of Discovery Health MD. “Our testing helps travelers comply with state and country mandates for COVID-19 testing prior to travel. We utilize gold-standard PCR testing solutions with same and next-day turn-around-times.”
Discovery Health MD is a trusted testing partner for flights to Hawaii as part of the deployment of Hawaii’s pre-travel testing program for inbound travelers. Currently, SEA and Washington state do not require COVID-19 testing prior to travel or quarantines upon arrival here. You should not travel if you have symptoms or feel ill.
“As Seattle’s hometown airline, we appreciate the Port’s efforts to provide testing options for travelers, which complements our own testing partners,” said Brooke Vatheuer, Alaska Airlines’ vice president strategic performance – Seattle. “Along with the more than 100 enhanced safety actions we’ve put into our Next-Level Care program, we’re focused on helping to expand pre-travel testing availability so that our guests can be prepared for their journey.”
If you’re departing or connecting from SEA and seeking a COVID-19 test before travel, check the guidance from your destination to understand the type of test needed and time frames associated with avoiding quarantines. Contact your airline with questions. Information on travel and other COVID-19 testing sites is available online here.
The Port will issue a competitive solicitation for a testing vendor who can offer COVID-19 testing services beyond this pilot in 2021.
Learn more on the airport’s action plan to protect your health at [email protected].