Virginia Garcia Offers More Free COVID-19 Testing

Virginia Garcia mobile covid testing.jpg

Against a backdrop of soaring cases of COVID-19 in Oregon, Virginia Garcia Memorial Health Center is offering free testing in Yamhill County this week and next.

The center's mobile truck will be in Willaminia this Tuesday and in McMinnville the following Tuesday. COVID-19 nasal swab tests will be offered along with flu shots. The service is free and open to everyone, with or without insurance.  

Virginia Garcia, a nonprofit with clinics in Washington and Yamhill counties, has been testing patients for COVID-19 since March, with its mobile unit out in the community since the summer. The health center has conducted more than 6,600 tests, with about 57% of patients of Latin origin. The health center's positive rate is nearly 12% overall and has reached 14.5% in the past week. The positive rate among Hispanics is higher still -- 16%. Statewide, the positive rate has averaged 5.3%, according to the Oregon Health Authority.

Oregon case counts have soared in recent days to more than 51,000 since the onset of the pandemic, with 723 new cases reported by the Oregon Health Authority on Monday. Another 18 people died, bringing the death toll to 734. The pandemic has been especially hard on the large Hispanic community that Virginia Garcia serves.

The agency has offered drive-through testing sites in Washington and Yamhill counties and plans to continue offering free testing every Tuesday starting in January, a spokeswoman said. Flu shots will also be provided.

This week and next week's events are being held in cooperation with the health authority, the Housing Authority of Yamhill County, Worksource - Yamhill, Unidos, Yamhill Community Care and Yamhill County Public Health.

Here are the details:

This Tuesday

  • 1-4:30pm
  • Free Methodist Church
  • 253 NE D Street
  • Willamina

Tueday, Nov. 17

  • 1-4:30pm
  • St James Catholic Church
  • 1145 SE 1st
  • McMinnville

The mobile health center is prepared to test about 250 people this week and more next week. The results take about 48 hours. Patients do not have to show identification and do not have to have symptoms. Interpreters will be available. For more information, visit virginiagarcia.org/coronavirus.

You can reach Lynne Terry at [email protected] or on Twitter @LynnePDX.

 

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