Phoenix launches COVID-19 testing van for underserved communities

Aug 18, 2020, 4:25 AM | Updated: 2:48 pm

PHOENIX — Free, convenient and fast COVID-19 testing can now be seen rolling through the streets of Phoenix.

A mobile COVID-19 testing van was unveiled on Monday morning by the city of Phoenix — the first of its kind in Arizona — along with its health care partner Vincere Cancer Center. The van is part of the city’s effort to deliver free coronavirus testing to underserved communities.

“The van will allow us to go into the community and respond to what’s happening,” Phoenix Mayor Kate Gallego told KTAR News 92.3 FM on Monday.

“If we have a hotspot, the van can go out and provide information in the community.”

The COVID-19 testing van offers viral and antibody tests administered by Vincere’s trained medical staff.

Vincere is among the few medical facilities throughout Arizona to get antigen and antibody test kits that produce results within 15 minutes. The van also offers more common viral tests that produce results in 2 to 10 days.

“The goal of this is to get rapid results in low income neighborhoods because they have limited resources,” Dr. Vershalee Shukla of the Vincere Cancer Center told KTAR News 92.3 FM

Not only will Phoenix’s COVID-19 testing van promote public health, but it’s also focused on supporting small businesses.

“We’ll be in the parking lots of local big businesses like U-Haul and Discount Tire, but also smaller ones like coffee shops and restaurants – it’s supposed to be a very big community supported event,” Shukla added.

The van began operations on Tuesday parked inside the U-Haul parking lot located near Central Avenue and Thomas Road.

Testing hours are from 7 a.m. to 1 p.m., five days a week, except for Wednesdays and Sundays.

Testing is available to everyone; however appointments are required. If available, insurance information will be requested, but is not required to get tested.

Those interested can schedule an appointment and inquire about the van’s future testing locations online.

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Phoenix launches COVID-19 testing van for underserved communities