As air travel begins to pick up amid the coronavirus pandemic, airlines are focusing on ways to keep their employees and customers safe and healthy. John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK) in New York City is now the first airport to have an on-site testing location for the virus and antibodies.
The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey said the pilot program is open to all employees for the JFK terminal, airlines and other airport workers. The site has the ability to screen up to 500 employees per day, according to a press release.
The modular testing site was developed by XpresSpa and is referred to as XpresCheck. The site, located in the arrivals hall at Terminal 4, has nine separate testing rooms.
“The Port Authority is pleased to open the nation’s first COVID-19 and antibody testing facility for employees at JFK International Airport with JFTIAT [JFK International Air Terminal] and XpresSpa,” said Kevin O’Toole, Port Authority chairman. “The agency will continue to enhance safety at its facilities by piloting the new technologies, programs, and policies needed to manage the impact of the coronavirus outbreak.”
Rick Cotton, Port Authority executive director, said: “Safety and security are the Port Authority’s top priorities, and opening the new XpresCheck COVID-19 pilot program builds on measures the agency has taken to protect travelers and airport workers across the region. Today’s announcement is an important addition to our commitment to providing a safe facility for workers and travelers alike.”
“At JFKIAT, we have always looked for ways to better serve our employees, passengers, and front-line airport workers at Terminal 4, and in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, ensuring a safe environment is more important than ever before,” added Roel Huinink, president and CEO of JFKIAT. “We are very pleased to partner with XpresSpa and the Port Authority to launch the first air terminal testing site in the U.S.”