ALEXANDRIA, Va. and OKLAHOMA CITY, Okla., Oct. 18, 2021 /PRNewswire/ -- Affinity Empowering, Inc., a leading provider of the most sophisticated and secure occupational, behavioral, and direct-to-consumer health services, today announced that Sisu Youth Services has been enrolled in Operation Expanded Testing (OET) and has begun providing no-cost COVID-19 tests to its clients and staff, marking the first organization enrolled in OET in the state of Oklahoma.
Through OET, Sisu Youth Services is providing weekly testing for its approximately 35 clients and staff to mitigate the spread of COVID-19 in its communal environment, with the goal of maintaining its community services throughout the pandemic. Sisu Youth Services is a charitable organization formed in 2015 to offer shelter and support to young adults, aged 15-24, experiencing homelessness in Oklahoma City.
"Early in the pandemic, our organization quickly adapted by expanding the availability of our services to those in need. We immediately recognized the need for COVID-19 testing, but most of our options were with external vendors and the logistics of regular testing proved difficult," said Kylee Holland, Program Director at Sisu Youth Services. "Operation Expanded Testing was the answer to those problems. The program provides us with the materials and training to handle testing internally. The ability to test consistently and conveniently is really important for our community to stay safe from an outbreak of COVID-19."
"We commend Sisu Youth Services for enrolling into Operation Expanded Testing and setting an example for COVID-19 safety in the state of Oklahoma. Surveillance COVID-19 testing, especially tests conducted with the gold standard PCR method of detection, is such an important measure to help reduce outbreak risk and maintain peace of mind in the community," said Anne Haslerud, Vice President of Recruitment and Enrollment at Affinity Empowering. "Testing through OET is convenient, highly accurate, has a short turnaround time for results, and is a more comfortable experience than other COVID-19 tests – all great reasons for an organization to enroll."
Media representatives are invited to Sisu Youth Services on Wednesday, October 20 to cover the first organization in Oklahoma to enroll into OET, the federal COVID-19 testing program. Testing will occur between 9:15 – 10:00 a.m. CDT for clients and staff of Sisu. Media representatives may enter at 3131 North Pennsylvania Ave, Oklahoma City, OK 73112. Staff members and clients being tested for COVID-19 will be available for interview and footage.
Advantages of Operation Expanded Testing
Affinity Empowering offers the OET program on behalf of Eurofins Clinical. Affinity and Eurofins use PCR testing, the gold standard for accurate detection of COVID-19. The PCR test used in OET has 100% sensitivity and specificity, meaning that there are no false positives or false negatives. It also has the lowest limit of detection for any authorized COVID-19 test, enabling detection of COVID-19 at its earliest stages when viral load is low.
While testing, individuals submit two samples - collected from the tip of the nose for minimal invasiveness. One sample from each individual is pooled together to expedite sample analysis. If a pool shows a positive result, the individual secondary samples from that pool are immediately analyzed. This scheme avoids the need for sample recollection and lowers the overall turnaround time for results. Through its proprietary Assure integrated technology platform, Affinity delivers COVID-19 test results with an average turnaround time of 24 hours.
About Operation Expanded Testing
Operation Expanded Testing (OET) is a federally funded program to provide no-cost, "click and go" COVID-19 surveillance testing to congregate settings, including K-12 schools, Historically Black Colleges & Universities (HBCUs), correctional facilities, homeless shelters, and select, nonprofit community centers through July 2022. COVID-19 surveillance testing is recommended by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) for the safe reopening of schools.
Affinity and Eurofins are coordinating OET program implementation to these institutions in 26 Northeastern and Southern states and additional territories, in agreement with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) in coordination with the U.S. Department of Defense (DOD).
Unlike other federal programs to fund COVID-19 testing, OET has no upfront costs nor paperwork. Interested eligible parties can simply visit Affinity's OET website and click the "Enroll Today" button and provide some basic information. Affinity will then provide the resources and training necessary to establish a COVID-19 testing program at your institution. For questions or additional information, visit the website or contact Affinity's 24/7 customer service staff directly (email: [email protected], phone: 1-844-631-0469).
About Affinity Empowering
Affinity Empowering is a leading occupational health, population, and disease management life sciences organization that specializes in providing technology-based solutions and support for overall health and wellness endeavors. In addition to providing occupational health, mental health, and cutting edge, wrap around substance use support, the company also has become a major provider of COVID-19 testing. Its Return to Normalcy program provides COVID-19 consultation, support, and conducts thousands of onsite and at home testing options to safely screen, monitor, and test populations. It currently supports numerous business partners in various fields, ranging from government contracts, universities, top Fortune 100 companies, and major film and television production companies.