PSA: We tried out a home laboratory service

It’s been months into the quarantine.

A relative of mine was hesitant to seek consult outside (reasonable). They were ready to try out telemedicine, which is fine since it’s a follow-up and physical exam wouldn’t have been life-changing. Unfortunately, adjusting medication would require their latest blood chemistries and urinalysis, and getting labs done outside is also risky (reasonable).

So I looked for home laboratory services online. I think there are a lot here on Facebook by different companies, but the ones I was familiar with were by AIDE app, which I think is partly managed by AC Health, and by Hi-Precision Diagnostics. We eventually chose the latter since we already had a record with that clinic. Also I didn’t want to redownload AIDE. Lol. But I do trust them. 😂

Services offered

Basically almost any blood test featured on their website and urinalysis was available for home service. CBC, metabolic panel, whatever. It was honestly great. The cost of the tests themselves were comparable to other outpatient non-hospital diagnostics, plus a Php30 or something collection tube fee. I am looking forward to the day they make UTZ and X-ray equally as mobile.

Setting an appointment

It was still by call, which was a struggle for someone who does not like making calls. But it was super easy. The availability depends on the exact branch near your location, but I got us a schedule for 5:30AM the next day, which was fast and convenient. Just check out their website for the phone number.

Experience

The medical technologist arrived and rang the doorbell several minutes late. (Adding this here because I did NOT appreciate waking up at 5:30AM only to wait). She handed over the cup for the urine, and gave like 5 minutes for collection. She was an absolute pro at blood extraction (I really miss doing phlebotomy and IV insertion???). The whole thing lasted less than 10 minutes.

Results

The results were available online after like 3 hours from their visit, though we actually checked way later during the day. We were given a code for patient privacy.

Safety in COVID-19

This is basically where a good 1/3 of the cost went. You have to pay for the PPE of the medtech, the home service fee, a risk fee, et cetera et cetera. The home service fee is variable and depends on the branch. Everything was in cash but apparently you can use credit for other branches. This is the cost of not going out and staying safe as much as possible.


I would recommend using home laboratory services, 10/10, for those who do have the money to spare. (No HMO coverage afaik). Honestly wish we tried this out way earlier. Basically helps us not to go outside since obviously hospitals and diagnostic clinics can be more high risk than your average corner grocery store (but I guess that depends on your neighborhood).

Stay safe! Stay healthy! ❤️

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