Sunday, April 17, 2022

Guess What the Company Selling Online Covid Tests 'Demands'?

An item in Gary Leff's View from the Wing caught our eye.

Company Selling Covid Tests Demands Testing Rule For Flights to US Remain In Force

These were the exact tests we utilized before flying home from Europe. 

We briefly mentioned experiencing some problems, and we'll add a little more detail. The first step in this type of self-administered online test is to open it in the camera presence of the "proctor," add the liquid solution, swab your nostrils, and set the swab in the solution. The proctor Kathy encountered was clearly based on India and her heavily accented English made it difficult to understand her, but we managed.

The next step in the procedure is to wait 15 minutes, after which a proctor makes contact and reads the results, which comprise a tiny line where the swab has been inserted. That sounds fine except... nobody made contact.

As the minutes ticked by, we started to worry about the deadline (30 minutes?) after which the test supposedly becomes invalid. We realized Kathy's phone was tied up so we got in touch with the company via email and Brian's phone. The first person Kathy talked to implied she would have to start the test all over again. How could she do that when we had no more tests? When Kathy asked to speak to a supervisor, she hung up.

In reality, the situation is that all the employees can do is to start the 15-minute timer again while we hope that this time a proctor makes contact. The person we spoke to was unable to make that clear.

We did that after multiple emails and phone calls, during which the employee instructed Kathy not to tell the proctor that anything was out of the ordinary. Kathy did get her negative test result, but long after the supposed "deadline" for the test's validity had passed.

In fairness, Brian's test went much more smoothly. Count us among those who would like to see this particular requirement eliminated.

Or course, if we owned stock in this particular company we might have a different opinion.


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