Coronavirus Testing Lab to Be Set Up in Ben Gurion Airport

The Departure Hall at Ben Gurion International Airport. (Avshalom Sassoni/Flash90)

The Transportation Ministry announced on Monday that the Omega corporation will be the company to run a coronavirus test lab in Ben Gurion airport.

Omega, a company that works with Rambam Medical Center, has committed to having the lab working within 45 days. The service will be provided to those flying abroad and entering Israel, and the tests will cost NIS 44.88 ($13). Results will be available 14 hours after testing.

Expedited tests will be available for NIS 134.64 ($40) with results available after four hours.

The company has undertaken to establish an app and online system, both for booking an appointment to perform the test, and for managing the system and issuing a “medical passport” to the passenger in Hebrew and English, and in any other language required.

Passengers entering Israel will be able to perform a test at the airport in an array of testers in the entrance hall that will be transferred to the corona laboratory.

The tender for the operation of the testing system is for three years with an extension period for an additional two years. In a situation where the demand for coronavirus testing decreases for any reason (finding a vaccine or any other means) the parties will be entitled to terminate the engagement. The tender includes the possibility of expanding to Ramon Airport and to all the facilities for passenger transfers managed by the Airports Authority.

Transportation Minister Miri Regev said, “The establishment of the corona laboratories at Ben Gurion airport is a critical step in opening the skies. We insisted that the price of the test for the passenger be cheap, accessible and available, and I am glad that the price of the test is reduced in an unprecedented way. I instructed the officials of the Airports Authority to expedite as much as possible the procedures for setting up the laboratory and in the meantime we are getting the backing from the health system. I congratulate the members of Omega for carrying out the tender quickly for the benefit of passengers. “