Mayor London Breed Announces Expansion of CityTestSF for All Essential Employees
CityTestSF will now expand to provide COVID-19 testing for all private sector and non-profit essential employees in San Francisco, and any San Francisco resident who is experiencing symptoms and cannot otherwise access testing.
San Francisco, CA — Mayor London N. Breed and Director of Health Dr. Grant Colfax today announced the expansion of CityTestSF to provide COVID-19 testing to any essential worker in San Francisco—both public and private sector workers—as well as any San Francisco resident who cannot otherwise access COVID-19 testing. The CityTestSF sites will provide expanded COVID-19 testing in collaboration with Color, Carbon Health, and One Medical. Starting today, San Francisco residents and essential workers experiencing COVID-19 symptoms can make an appointment for CityTestSF online at sf.gov/citytestsf.
Expanding San Francisco’s testing capacity to more people with symptoms is critical to mitigating the spread of the virus. CityTestSF is part of San Francisco’s ongoing commitment to rapidly increase its testing capacity while pursuing strategic partnerships, including leveraging the expertise of San Francisco’s private health care providers. The two CityTestSF sites combined can test as many as 1,500 people with symptoms each day.
“Our goal is for every San Francisco resident who has symptoms of COVID-19 to have access to testing. We want to ensure all frontline and essential employees that leave their homes every day to serve our residents have a fast, easy, and accessible option for testing,” said Mayor Breed. “We also want those who don’t have insurance, or who lack access to health care or access to basic services to know they can be tested through CityTestSF and receive the support and health care they need. This is one important piece of our efforts to slow the spread of the virus and keep our entire community safe and healthy.”
The CityTestSF site at Piers 30-32 is designed for high throughput to serve the needs of health care workers, first responders, and essential workers. As a drive-thru and walk-thru site, it can accommodate as many as 1,000 appointments per day. The CityTestSF – SoMa community site is available to all members of the community who are symptomatic, regardless of their ability to pay. This site offers drive-thru and walk-thru testing, and will provide translation services in order to better serve people without current connections to care. The City is working with small businesses, labor organizations, and community and faith-based partners to ensure people know about this testing resource.
“The expansion of CityTestSF is a leap forward in our fight against the coronavirus,” said Dr. Colfax. “Since the beginning, our response to the coronavirus emergency has focused on protecting vulnerable populations, health care workers and first responders, and intervening where it can make the most difference. It is critical to test essential workers and other people with symptoms, so that swift action can follow to provide care, contact investigation, and isolation and quarantine to reduce the risk of further exposure and slow the spread of the virus.”
Earlier this month, Mayor Breed announced the creation of CityTestSF at Piers 30-32 for the City’s frontline workers. Last week, the site expanded to provide tests to all City contractors and nonprofit providers, including In-Home Supportive Services workers, janitorial staff, homeless service providers, and street cleaners. Testing the essential workforce at the first sign of symptoms is imperative to limiting exposure and reducing the spread of the virus.
Today, Mayor Breed is announcing a further expansion of CityTestSF to provide COVID-19 testing to all essential employees in San Francisco who are experiencing symptoms, including employees at private companies and small businesses who are doing essential work, such as grocery store employees, social workers, restaurant workers, transit providers, and delivery workers.
Symptoms of COVID-19 include fever, and unexplained cough, sore throat, shortness of breath, chills, headache, body aches, fatigue, diarrhea, runny nose, congestion and loss of the sense of smell or taste.
The City is partnering with three Bay Area companies—Color, Carbon Health, and One Medical—to run CityTestSF. Color is providing the full testing infrastructure, including registration, intake, and appointment scheduling, as well as resulting and reporting workflows. Testing is performed through Color’s high-throughput CLIA lab. Carbon Health and One Medical are responsible for sample collection and the clinical operations at the CityTestSF sites. The sites have the capacity to test 1,500 people per day. In order to follow social distancing guidelines, testing at CityTestSF sites are available by appointment only.
Color’s COVID-19 testing platform and high capacity, CLIA-certified laboratory adds capacity to the City’s efforts, supports private and public employer return-to-work solutions, and provides rapid results within a 24 to 48 hour turnaround time. All test results are reported to the patient and the Department of Public Health.
“San Francisco continues to lead the country in its pandemic response. Mayor Breed’s expansion of access to COVID-19 testing to all essential workers in the City as well as the broader public is a model of how high-capacity testing access outside of healthcare institutions will help address the crisis and reopen economies,” said Color CEO Othman Laraki. “We are honored to expand our partnership with the City to provide this service to all San Franciscans.”
Carbon Health providers manage the clinical operations at CityTestSF at Piers 30-32. Carbon Health, headquartered in San Francisco, in a tech-enabled healthcare provider that has supported frontline worker testing efforts across the State of California and is offering their clinical support to the effort at cost. Since the start of the COVID-19 crisis Carbon Health has been at the forefront of the pandemic to increase access to care and testing.
“Widespread testing is critical in mitigating the spread of the virus and the first step to reopening the economy. We are grateful to continue our partnership with the City to expand testing to essential workers and the underserved communities in San Francisco,” said Eren Bali, Co-Founder and CEO of Carbon Health. “Our healthcare providers who have been on the frontlines at the CityTestSF Embarcadero site are proud to continue serving San Franciscans who are in need during these challenging times.”
One Medical’s team of healthcare providers manages the clinical operations at CityTestSF - SoMa site. One Medical is a leading national digital health and primary care organization headquartered in San Francisco with more than 30 offices in the Bay Area. One Medical has provided virtual care to over a quarter million patients in the weeks following the initial outbreak of COVID-19, and is now operating over fifteen open-air testing sites across the country to care for those in need and help alleviate the spread.
“Widely available COVID-19 testing is crucial for getting Bay Area residents back to work, school and their daily lives,” said One Medical Chief Medical Officer Andrew Diamond, MD, PhD. “The One Medical team’s partnership with the City of San Francisco will allow us to provide the essential service of safe, efficient and convenient testing to more people during this unprecedented time of need.”
The COVID-19 test detects if an individual has the virus at the time of the test. However, it does not test for immunity or if someone had the virus in the past. Furthermore, if the test is negative, a person must remain cautious and continue to practice precautions as they can still be infected if exposed to the virus after testing.
In addition to CityTestSF, the City has been working to expand testing capacity at the Public Health Lab, hospitals, commercial labs, and with community partners. The expanded availability of testing is expected to increase the number of positive COVID-19 cases confirmed in San Francisco. As of March 24, San Francisco along with other Bay Area counties issued a health order requiring laboratories performing COVID-19 tests to report all testing data to state and local health authorities. The City is working with UCSF and UC Berkeley to use the data and develop models to understand the spread of virus in the community and inform data driven responses.
To learn more about CityTestSF, go to http://sf.gov/citytestsf or call 311.