Two COVID-19 testing sites open in Santa Clara County

Santa Clara County on Wednesday is opening two new coronavirus testing sites for people who want to know if they have COVID-19.

One is at James Lick High school in East San Jose at 57 N White Road and the other is at Christopher High School in Gilroy at 850 Day Road. 

The tests are by appointment only and you do have to meet certain requirements.

Santa Clara County Board of Supervisors President Cindy Chavez said the goal is to be able to test as many as 4,000 people a day at all the different sites throughout the county. She said the county may be able to reach that goal by sometime next week.

"To partner with the state, with the health care community, to get as many people tested in our community as possible," she said.

Testing capacity at the two new sites is limited to just 132 people, per site per day, which is why the county is prioritizing who can be tested.

Officials are giving priority to people who work in health care facilities, followed by people who have COVID-19 symptoms, and then, healthcare workers and first responders.

But the tests are free, and you don't have to live in Santa Clara County to be tested. 

Chavez said eventually they want to expand that testing to more people.

"We're trying to get enough tests, so that everybody can be tested," she said. "We want to make sure people know that they're healthy and if they're not, following up with them and their family members."

Chavez said one of the challenges to reaching universal testing, is finding all the necessary components of those tests.

"For example, the county of Santa Clara right now could test another 1,000 people a day, if we had enough reagent to do that," Chavez said. "We're in the process of continuing to buy that [reagent], but remember, we're competing with the entire country when we're making those purchases."

The sites will be open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday through Friday. 

The tests are provided by the Santa Clara County Department of Public Health and a private medical company called Optum Serve. The company is partnering with other local governments around the state, to open 80 different testing sites like this throughout California.

Testing will be by appointment only. Online appointments are available here. Phone registration is available for those without internet access or for those who require English interpretation at 888-634-1123.