Yes, Baltimore, it is apparently possible to make paternity testing “fun” — just get yourself a giant blue RV and a catchy slogan (“Who’s Your Daddy?”), and a usually arduous/upsetting DNA test suddenly becomes almost… entertaining.
Or that at least is what mobile health clinic company Health Street hopes. According to the Baltimore Sun, the DNA-testing Winnebago in question offers $350 paternity tests; DNA tests handled through official state channels cost $120, plus a $25 application fee.
Although other kinds of mobile clinics have been useful in reaching populations that might not otherwise be able/willing to take care of quick medical procedures, DNA testing is a bit of a different animal. A family law expert worries that rampant testing might undermine relationships and tear apart existing families. But since “Who’s Your Daddy” hasn’t had a whole lot of takers, that danger is still more of a hypothetical at this point.
But Health Street’s owner Jared Rosenthal told the Sun that even just getting people talking is good enough for him: “[Paternity testing]’s somewhat of an in-the-closet issue. We’re kind of taking the covers off it — putting it on the street.” Perhaps unsurprisingly, Rosenthal is clamoring for his business to be turned into a reality TV program. He heads off objections by insisting that he’s not interested in “daytime television, ‘You Are NOT The Father’”-type programming, but, well, he did name his truck “Who’s Your Daddy.” I have a feeling I won’t be tuning in.