3 September 2020
By Elaine Murphy
New rapid Covid testing in 15 minutes will be a game changer
Oaklodge Nursing Home in Co. Cork (Located West of Ballycotton in East Cork) is the first nursing home in Ireland to pilot innovative Covid-19 testing. The Cloyne based home is part of a pilot programme for the new Health Passport, developed by Irish-based ROQU Group.
Health Passport is a world-first digital platform that will facilitate increased Covid-19 testing by providing highly accurate diagnoses’ in less than 15 mins. The system has been developed specifically to work in harmony with all official COVID-19 tests and will include laboratory swab, finger prick blood tests and the very latest rapid testing solutions. Results will show up quickly and can be linked to an app to demonstrate if a person has recently tested positive or negative – their health passport.
Oaklodge say that continuous proactive testing of staff, residents and visitors is the only way to minimise risks related to COVID-19 and ensure they can continue to operate safely and receive visitors with the confidence of knowing they are Covid-free.
Commenting, Diarmuid O Dálaigh, proprietor of Oaklodge Nursing Home, said, “We have rigorously followed the guidelines and implemented all possible safety measures to protect our residents and staff, but normal life as we knew it came to an end months ago. Until there is a vaccine, the only solution is to test and keep testing everyone, so we can immediately isolate any positive cases while others are able to carry on their daily activities. We were delighted when our internal research found this rapid test and digital Health Passport Ireland as it keeps us at the forefront of the Care sector protecting our residents.
We are delighted to have been invited to be part of this exciting pilot programme. It is a game changer for the care sector as it will allow us to take control and proactively monitor our staff, residents’ and visitors’ health status in real time, which will in turn protect everyone. This will also give residents, family members and ourselves more confidence to allow visits knowing they are Covid-free.”
Robert Quirke, President and CEO of ROQU Group, said, “Around the world, there is continued frustration and disappointment due to COVID-19 restrictions. Health Passport is designed to put a safety net in place where none currently exists. It is a world-first innovation, proudly engineered in Ireland to the highest standards, that will enable business and society to finally move forward.
“Everybody who has been tested for COVID-19 will have the option to be included on Health Passport Ireland which allows them to display and also scan their real-time COVID status whenever appropriate,” he said.
Oaklodge Nursing Home was also the first to trial remote temperature checking software (CREW) earlier this summer, which was developed by software development company 8 West Consulting, with the College of Medicine and Health at University College Cork (UCC), The ASSERT centre and Tyndall Institute at UCC. Oaklodge specialise in the care of older people and last year launched Ireland’s first large scale care village.