Los Angeles expands coronavirus testing

Los Angeles County has set up more COVID-19 testing sites for people most at risk.

By Gabriel Arizon, Editor-in-Chief

Los Angeles County and the City of Los Angeles have opened 10 new coronavirus testing locations to find infections among its most high-risk citizens.

On April 3, LA County set up three new drive-up mobile testing sites at the Antelope Valley Mall, the Pomona Fairplex and the South Bay Galleria, according to the county testing website. Additionally, the City of LA opened sites at the Glendale Memorial Hospital, the Hansen Dam Recreational Center, the Hotchkin Memorial Training Center and the Crenshaw Christian Center.

The new sites are available only through an appointment. Testing is limited to those who show symptoms and are 65 years or older, those with symptoms who have underlying medical conditions or those who are subject to a mandatory 14-day quarantine due to confirmed exposure of COVID-19 (with more than seven days of the quarantine remaining).

“Today, we have tested over 126,000 individuals [in California],” said Gov. Gavin Newsom in a press conference. “That testing number may sound high to some, it is too low to many others and certainly to me. Let me just acknowledge on the onset that the testing space has been a challenging one for us … and I have a responsibility as your governor to [do] better and to do more testing in the state of California.”

Individuals who are eligible and have made an appointment will receive a confirmation email listing the site and time for their test. There are two types of tests — an oral and a nasal swab — and the type administered will depend on the site’s staff and kits available. The test will be free and individuals can remain in their car while they take it. It will take approximately three or four days for patients to receive their results.

The City of LA made tests available to at-risk groups on March 23 at four different sites, as reported by CBS Los Angeles. According to a press release by the LA County Department of Public Health, 5277 cases of coronavirus have been reported to date, including 117 deaths. In the past 48 hours, 1238 new infections were discovered, and as of April 4, 22 percent of positive cases had to be hospitalized.

“Though COVID-19 infects people of all ages, the majority of the people dying from COVID-19 are individuals over the age of 65 with underlying health conditions,” said Director of Public Health Barbara Ferrer. “Now more than ever, we must try to protect those most vulnerable by making it easy for them to take every precaution and safely stay home.”

To determine eligibility and to make an appointment, go to coronavirus.lacity.org/testing. For more information, visit LA County’s Public Health website.

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