City launches new COVID-19 testing site for Tenderloin residents

AURORA, CO - MARCH 26: Patient forms at the STRIDE Community Health Center's COVID-19 drive-thru testing site at the Aurora Health and Wellness Plaza March 26, 2020. . (Photo by Andy Cross/MediaNews Group/The Denver Post via Getty Images)

The city of San Francisco will launch a pop-up COVID-19 testing 
site on Tuesday in the Tenderloin neighborhood, providing free testing for some of the city's most needy residents.

The testing will be done at a parking lot adjacent to 330 Ellis 
St. on Tuesdays from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and is made possible through a partnership with the city's Department of Public Health and Glide Memorial Church, as well as other community organizations.

The Tenderloin is one of the areas in the city hit hardest by 
COVID-19, along with the city's Mission, Bayview and Hunters Point neighborhoods. To date, there have been 314 positive cases in the Tenderloin, which has an estimated 30,000 residents.

"As we adapt to living with COVID-19 until we have a vaccine, 
testing continues to be a critical part of our citywide response and will help us slow the spread of the virus in our community," Mayor London Breed said in a statement.

"The Tenderloin has been hit hard by the COVID-19 pandemic, and establishing this permanent testing site in partnership with the community organizations is a critical step in protecting the health of the neighborhood," said the area's supervisor, Matt Haney.

"We are determined to create a familiar and welcoming presence at the testing site for everyone in the neighborhood," San Francisco's Health Director Dr. Grant Colfax said.

The new testing site will build on the success of a mobile testing 
site launched in the neighborhood back in May, providing low-barrier testing for more than 1,600 vulnerable residents over a nine-day period.

At the new site last week, 26 people were tested in a pilot run.

Residents can register on Thursdays and Fridays from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. in the lobby of 330 Ellis St. Although the testing is only happening on Tuesdays for now, a second day of the week may be added.

Those who test positive will be offered social services and 
contact tracing to slow down the spread of the virus. More information about the new site can be found at www.sf.gov/gettestedsf.