Coronavirus News: New York City churches to become temporary COVID-19 testing sites

NEW YORK (WABC) -- New York is launching a new initiative to expand access to testing in low-income communities and communities of color in New York City, Governor Andrew Cuomo announced Saturday.

The state is partnering with Northwell Health to establish 24 additional, temporary testing sites at churches in predominantly minority communities.

"This is a different kind of partnership, it's creative, but it's necessary," Cuomo said, explaining that churches will do the community outreach to drive home why testing is needed, and Northwell will handle the testing.

Cuomo said of the 21 zip codes with the most new COVID-19 hospitalizations, 20 have greater-than-average black or Latino populations.

The governor said adding the church sites to the drive-through, walk-in and public-housing testing facilities already in place means coverage will be extensive.

"The sites will be there, we now need New Yorkers to go get the tests," Cuomo said. "You want to know if you have it, not just for yourself, but so you don't communicate it to anyone else."

Some will be opening the week of May 12 while others are scheduled to open the week of May 19.


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