Middleton, MA According to McSweeney Construction and Development Corp., construction has been completed on the first permanent COVID-19/influenza testing site and vaccination distribution facility in New England, for Middleton Family Medicine.
The healthcare provider has expanded its current location at 147 S. Main St. to include the permanent drive-thru facility, which allows them to safely test for infectious diseases, including COVID-19 and the flu, and administer the COVID-19 vaccine and the flu shot, all in an outdoor setting.
McSweeney Construction installed the foundations and parking lane changes for an Equinox Louvered Roof canopy, manufactured and installed by OmniMax International, adjacent to Middleton Family Medicine’s existing office. The construction firm also converted a 250 s/f interior space into a dedicated clinical workstation, which has direct access to the two lane testing/vaccination location.
The canopy’s motorized louvers are designed to provide shelter from rain and snow. Perimeter side wall curtains help ensure a private patient experience while allowing Middleton Family Medicine to have control of the environment, including providing shade from the sun and full control of the heat and airflow.
The project was inspired by Middleton Family Medicine and has been designed and managed by Steve Loeper, principal of Structured Solutions. McSweeney Construction and Structured Solutions have worked together as a team to finalize and plan the many details of the testing canopy and the interior space that will support the testing.
According to Brian McSweeney, president and CEO of McSweeney Construction and Development, the ability to create a controlled environment outside of the medical office is imperative for ensuring a comfortable experience for visitors while protecting the health of medical staff.
“Ninety-nine percent of the temporary testing sites you see currently are simply tents that are not really set up to withstand a major snow storm or major rain event, and they don’t provide the heating and/or cooling that might be required to keep everybody that’s inside at a comfortable temperature,” he says. “The installation of the canopy and dedicated clinical workstation allows for a stress-free experience for anyone visiting the facility and provides a level of comfort for every staff member of the practice, by reducing the unknown exposures during the course of the COVID-19 pandemic and the flu season.”
Middleton Family Medicine is also installing specialized Abbott ID NOWTM rapid molecular testing devices to allow for quick turnaround of results for COVID-19, Influenza A/B, and Strep A . Dr. Mark Allara of Middleton Family Medicine feels that installing the permanent facility will help the healthcare provider continue to provide the excellent level of service they have been dedicated to since day one of the pandemic.
“It was extremely important to us to protect the health and safety of our dedicated staff, while delivering an important service to our patients. Setting up a permanent outdoor location ensures we are providing convenient and hassle-free access to testing and vaccination for both COVID-19 and influenza for years to come.” said Allara.
“Dr. Allara and Middleton Family Medicine are setting an example of a progressive healthcare facility that is always looking for new ways to support their clients, and make themselves stand out and above the other medical establishments in the area,” added McSweeney. “We believe these permanent outdoor environments are quickly becoming a vital component for any healthcare facility, as they continue to address the challenges of the pandemic and strive to keep patients and staff safe and healthy.”