Office of Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti

 

Mayor Garcetti highlights testing efforts in vulnerable communities

Mayor keeps focus on equity in the City’s COVID-19 response, marks 1 million tests administered at Dodger Stadium so far

LOS ANGELES — Mayor Eric Garcetti today highlighted the City’s ongoing effort to bring testing and public health resources to L.A.’s most vulnerable neighborhoods. With communities of color hit hardest by COVID-19, the Mayor and key partners have made equity a centerpiece of the local pandemic response — ensuring Black, Latino, and low-income families can access the support needed to stay healthy and safe. 

“COVID-19 has laid bare deep inequities in health and economic security across our city and country, and here in Los Angeles, we have acted swiftly and strategically to deliver testing, care, and relief to our most vulnerable households,” said Mayor Garcetti. “No one should ever be left to suffer or worry on account of their race, income, or zip code –– and with the pandemic still raging and a vaccine around the corner, we will continue to follow the data, deliver aid where it’s needed most, and work around-the-clock to save lives.”

From the start of the pandemic, Mayor Garcetti, along with City and County officials, have used publicly available data to track trends in the virus and target resources where they can do the most good. Angelenos can follow the case data on the City’s recently launched COVID-19 Neighborhood Map. This week, local testing site data revealed test positivity rates ranging from 20 to 33 percent in areas that are home to predominantly Black and Latino households — higher than any other part of Los Angeles. 

These numbers are clear reminders of the importance of L.A.’s robust testing infrastructure, which is why the City continues to ramp up access to free tests across the board, especially in traditionally underserved communities.

One of the key components of the City’s equity-driven approach has been the testing site at Dodger Stadium — the largest in the nation, launched in partnership with the Dodgers — which this week surpassed the sobering milestone of 1 million tests administered since May. 

“The Dodgers are committed to doing our part in the battle against COVID-19 by ensuring that testing continues to be available to all Angelenos, especially with the ongoing surge in cases and increase in demand for testing in Los Angeles,” said Los Angeles Dodgers President & CEO Stan Kasten. “Surpassing one million tests at Dodger Stadium is a sobering reminder of just how many families have been affected by this terrible pandemic, and we thank the City and all our partners on the frontlines that continue to provide life-saving services to our community.”

To address concerns expressed by neighborhood residents, the Dodger Stadium site will be closed on Saturday, January 2, giving the Los Angeles Fire Department, the Dodgers, and the Department of Transportation time to restructure the site, reroute testing operations, and alleviate traffic for nearby residents. The site will reopen on Monday, January 4.

The City’s testing program complements a series of steps designed to serve Angelenos suffering and struggling most in the face of this pandemic. Earlier this week, the City launched Vaccine Points-of-Dispensing (PODs) at three L.A. City Recreation and Parks locations where health care workers can receive the COVID-19 vaccine. The Mayor has also established initiatives to provide direct assistance to families in need, regardless of immigration status; aid to restaurant employees out of a job due to COVID-19 restrictions; help to households facing food insecurity; and rental relief and support to local tenants.

About the City of L.A.’s COVID-19 Testing and Vaccination Program

The City of Los Angeles, in partnership with Curative, CORE, and the LAFD, operates one of the largest municipal COVID-19 free testing programs in the country, including the largest testing site in the nation at Dodger Stadium. Five of these testing sites, and an additional 32 mobile testing sites, provide free flu vaccines to the public in partnership with the USC School of Pharmacy and Curative; to date, the City teams have administered over 14,000 flu shots. 

The City launched its testing program on March 20th to test first responders and vulnerable individuals. At Mayor Garcetti’s direction, free testing was rapidly offered to all residents, with or without symptoms, whether or not they have insurance. Since then, the City has tested over 3.3 million people and can test up to 46,000 people each day across 10 City testing sites and up to 6 mobile testing sites. To find more information or make an appointment, please visit coronavirus.lacity.org/testing