New walk-up, drive through free COVID testing site in Oakland

FILE - A medical personnel member takes samples on a woman at a "drive-thru" coronavirus testing lab.

Another opportunity for Oaklanders to get tested for COVID-19 is Saturday on the east side of the city, organizers said. 

From 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., testing will be available at Acts Full Gospel Church, 1034 66th Ave. Testing is free and test-takers can walk up or drive up to get tested. 

The focus of the testing is the Black community, which has taken testing seriously yet has been disproportionately affected by deaths from the coronavirus.

"Unfortunately, where we're seeing a rise in positive testing is 
with essential workers, who are many times testing COVID-19 positive because their employer failed to provide safe working conditions," Dr. Kim Rhoads, director of the Umoja Health COVID-19 Test and Respond Initiative, said in a statement.

One example may be McDonald'S, 4514 Telegraph Ave., Oakland. The restaurant closed temporarily May 26 after a total of 35 people from that store and another in Berkeley tested positive. 

Attorneys for the workers alleged that the restaurant was not 
doing enough to ensure workers were safe. 

The death rate per 100,000 people in the Black community is higher at 52.7 than any other ethnic group in Alameda County, according to the Alameda County Department of Public Health.

Eighty-five Black county residents have died of the coronavirus 
out of 462 total deaths. The Hispanic community has suffered the most deaths at 127. 

Organizers of Saturday's testing said that it has been available 
in Black neighborhoods, but other groups have over-utilized those 
opportunities. Eighty-five to 90 percent of patients at Roots Clinic in Oakland are Black but only 20 percent of those tested at sites offered by the clinic have been Black, according to organizers. 

Still, Black Alameda County residents are the top test takers in 
the county. 

The testing being offered Saturday is through a partnership with 
the University of California at San Francisco, United in Health, Oakland Frontline Healers and Black groups. 

To register for testing, go to