County co-sponsors community COVID-19 testing

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The Kent County Health Department is partnering with the Black Impact Collaborative and LINC UP to provide a free COVID-19 community testing day.

The public can take advantage of free testing from 2-7 p.m. Monday at the Gallery at LINC UP, at 167 Madison Ave. SE, Grand Rapids.

“We know that COVID-19 has been disproportionately impacting the African American and Latinx communities, so the Black Impact Collaborative wanted to partner with Kent County to make sure that African Americans and Latinxs in our community have the opportunity to get tested,” Kent County Commissioner Robert Womack said. “This is such a needed resource for our community to allow anyone to get tested, and we are thankful that the county put this testing day together.”

In Kent County, members of the Latinx community account for 39.4% of the COVID-19 cases while comprising 10% of the population, and African Americans make up 19.25% of the cases but make up 10% of the population.

“Our data is showing that 17% of our COVID-19 positive cases are located in the 49507 ZIP code and yet only 6% of Kent County’s population resides in this area,” said Dr. Adam London, director of the Kent County Health Department. “This type of data continues to inform our response to COVID-19 and ensures our resources are accessible to the most impacted neighborhoods.”

The Kent County Health Department will continue working to address the racial and ethnic health disparities by collaborating with community partners to offer testing in areas that are showing a higher prevalence of positive cases.

“We are excited to work with community partners like the Kent County Health Department, who recognize that racial health disparities exist and are actively working to address them by changing their practices,” said Vincent Thurman, communications manager at LINC UP. “COVID-19 has further revealed how stark these disparities are and how much needs to change. Partnering with KCHD is a great step forward to improving equity in healthcare.”

Anyone 6 months of age or older can get tested. While walk-ins are welcome, pre-registration for this event is encouraged by going online or calling (616) 632-7200.

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