Los Angeles County will begin operating a new coronavirus testing site in Bellflower Thursday after opening another in Boyle Heights Wednesday.
The drive-up testing sites -- at the Bellflower Civic Center parking structure at 16600 Civic Center Drive and 1724 Pennsylvania Ave. -- are two of at least 27 testing sites that have been launched by the city of Los Angeles and the county in recent weeks.
Free tests will be available to any Los Angeles County resident who is experiencing symptoms of COVID-19 and makes an appointment through the website -- https://lacovidprod.service-now.com/rrs, according to Supervisor Janice Hahn's office.
"This new drive-up site in Bellflower will improve access to testing for residents in southeast L.A. County and give us a better understanding of the spread of this virus in these communities,'' Hahn said.
"If you have symptoms of COVID-19, you can make an appointment online for this new site in Bellflower or at any of the 27 testing sites established across L.A. County."
The testing site was developed as part of a joint effort between the Los Angeles County Fire Department, Los Angeles County Department of Health Services and Bellflower.
Bellflower Mayor Juan Garza said it is "crucial that our region and Bellflower get a clear picture of how many people are COVID-19 positive and peace of mind for those that are not.''
The Boyle Heights site opened Tuesday with the support of Adventist Health White Memorial and AltaMed.
"Many of our hardest working families are either uninsured or underinsured and don't normally seek access to health care, which is why increasing access to COVID-19 mobile testing sites remains one of my top priorities,'' Supervisor Hilda Solis said.
"We are in this public health crisis together. This virus does not discriminate; it has the potential to impact each of our communities.''
Patients at the Boyle Heights drive-up will stay in their cars while receiving a brief medical evaluation. Pedestrians with appointments can also be seen.
"This extraordinary partnership will provide comprehensive services to a vulnerable population on the East Side, including outreach, education, COVID-19 testing, contact tracing, medical advice and telehealth, treatment and referral from licensed clinicians and their support staff,'' said Dr. Hector Flores, chairman of the Adventist Health White Memorial Department of Family Medicine.
Once a health care provider confirms that the public health criteria for testing has been met, individuals at the Boyle Heights location will be instructed on how to complete a self-administered test and swab their own mouths/throats.
Tests at some sites are nasal swabs by a healthcare professional, according to the Department of Public Health website.
The testing process should take between 5 and 10 minutes to complete. However, waiting times may vary depending on the time.