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San Francisco Launches Large Scale COVID-19 Testing In Hunters Point, Visitacion Valley And Sunnydale

SAN FRANCISCO (CBS SF) -- Health officials, alarmed by a significant uptick in COVID-19 cases in San Francisco's Bayview/Hunters Point neighborhood, announced Friday the launch of a wide-scale testing program for residents who live in the area.

In a press release detailing the program, officials said there has been 194 confirmed cases among Bayview Hunters Point residents as of May 28, 2020.

Southeast neighborhoods including Visitacion Valley and Sunnydale have seen existing social inequities such as homelessness, unemployment and food access exacerbated by the pandemic.

Similar to the recent COVID-19 study in the Mission, medical teams will now focus on the Bayview Hunters Point, Visitacion Valley, and Sunnydale neighborhoods. The study will begin on May 30th with the goal of testing as many residents -- age four years and older -- as possible.

The program is the product of a partnership between the University of California San Francisco, Community Partners, United in Health and the San Francisco Department of Public Health.

People living, working, playing or praying within those neighborhoods with or without COVID-19 symptoms are eligible for testing and can receive two COVID-19 tests: a nasal swab to test for current infection and a blood draw to test for prior infection known as antibody testing.

There will also be a special effort made to test individuals who are unhoused or underhoused in the Bayview.

"The moment we knew that COVID-19 was affecting District 10 and other vulnerable populations disproportionately, we immediately began to demand asymptomatic testing for everyone in our communities," said Supervisor Shamann Walton. "It's been a fight, but we are making some headway."

Dr. Kim Rhoads says testing is the key to eventually controlling the virus.

"There is no real treatment for COVID-19 and no vaccine to prevent it," Rhodes said. "The only way to crush this coronavirus is to identify people who are positive and potentially infectious, and to provide whatever support they need to isolate."

Organizers and city officials will be kicking off the testing initiative on Saturday at 8:30 a.m. at the Leola Havard School on 1520 Oakdale Ave.

The testing initiative will be at the following dates and times:

    • BAYVIEW:Saturday & Sunday, May 30th & 31st

      9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

      Location: ​Leola Havard School

      1520 Oakdale Ave.


    • SUNNYDALE/VISITACION VALLEY: Monday & Tuesday, ​June 1st & 2nd

      9:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m.

      Location: ​Herz Playground

      1701 Visitacion Ave.


  • BAYVIEW: Underhoused and Unhoused IndividualsSaturday & Sunday, June 6th & June 7th

    Time and location to be determined.

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