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COVID testing comes to the West Side

Coronavirus in West Virginia
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February 07 2021 06:00 pm

CHARLESTON, WV (WOWK) – A free drive-and-walk-up COVID-19 testing site was held on Charleston’s West Side all day.

Dozens of cars, lined up from the More Excellent Way Life Center on Virginia Street West. Traveling all the way down, almost to the freeway. And some others, walking up too.

“You see the lines,” Martec Washington said. “And you heard her say, ‘the walk up is packed.’”

All of these West Side residents, getting COVID-19 tested for free.

This is the first COVID-19 testing site held in the heart of the West Side.

“The Schoenbaum Center is in North Charleston,” Washington said. “It’s not on the West Side. It seems centrally located, but it’s really not. It’s hard for people in this community to get over there.”

“We wanted to serve a minority population,” said Dr. Sherri Young, the Kanawha-Charleston Health Officer. “We want to make sure we’re in every community that needs COVID testing and this is one of the places that has been under-served, both for medical care and COVID testing.”

The Kanawha-Charleston Health Department came prepared with a total of 1,000 tests.

“I’m hoping they have to go get more tests,” Washington said. “The goal today is 1,500 people to get tested.”

“We had almost 100 already done by the time we officially started at 12,” said Young.

The site closed at 4 p.m., but anyone in line before four got tested. 

They tested a total of 442 people.

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