Testing Partnership in Fairfax County
In Fairfax, Culmore Clinic and Neighborhood Health have responded to the need for testing vulnerable populations by partnering to establish a testing site.
A COVID-19 testing partnership is underway at Culmore Clinic, located in Falls Church and serves uninsured patients residing in the communities of Culmore and Bailey's Crossroads as well Skyline and Seven Corners in Fairfax County. These densely populated communities, particularly Culmore, have a large Latino population, many of whom are patients of this free clinic. The incidence of COVID-19 cases within the Latino community in Fairfax County has been very high as compared to other populations.
Latinos make up close to 60% of the county's COVID-19 cases, a rate more than three times their share of the population in Culmore Clinic's service area, a region that has been identified as an “island of disadvantage” in a recent health study with a third of children living in poverty and greater than half of residents going uninsured.
In this partnership, Neighborhood Health, an FQHC with locations in Fairfax County, Arlington County and Alexandria, is supplying test kits to the outdoor test site at Culmore Clinic as well as registering patients for testing. Culmore Clinic's volunteer nurses are conducting swabs tests and other free clinic volunteers are setting up and managing the receiving area for patients in their parking lot (drive up and walk-up options). This testing site started in early May with 21 with the capacity to conduct 20-25 tests a day, four days a week, or 80-100 tests a week.
Crucial for the treatment of sick individuals, by conducting testing, free clinics are also supporting the larger public health effort to help mitigate the spread of COVID-19. In Virginia, 19% of free clinics are currently testing for COVID-19 and another 19% are hoping to in the near future as a result of additional support partnerships like this one.