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Monday, April 20, 2020

Group of Black Women Doctors Bring Free COVID-19 Test Kits to Underserved Neighborhoods

Black women doctors administering COVID-19 tests

Philadelphia, PA — Dr. Ala Stanford and other African American doctors (mostly women) from Pennsylvania have launched the Black Doctors COVID-19 Consortium to provide free mobile coronavirus testing to underserved communities in hopes to prevent further spread of the virus, especially among Black people.

Dr. Stanford, who is a pediatric surgeon, owns a private practice and a Black-owned medical consulting firm called REAL Concierge Medicine. She is also on staff at Abington-Jefferson Hospital in Hatfield Township. She says she launched the initiative because she wanted to do something about the increasing numbers of cases and deaths related to COVID-19 in communities where Afriacn Americans live.

Initially, she created and uploaded a video trying to disprove the myth that African Americans were resistant to COVID-19. But even though some were worried that if they had the virus, they couldn’t get tested.

That’s when she decided to form Black Doctors COVID-19 Consortium with her colleagues in the medical field as well as churches in the Black communities in Philadelphia. Having some testing kits on hand, Stanford and the other doctors “put our supplies together and we went out to the community,” she told WHYY.

Those who want to be tested can sign up for an appointment online. The group is testing anyone, particularly in underserved communities, who has coronavirus symptoms or known contact with someone who tested positive.

They have set up a GoFundMe page to raise funds to provide COVID-19 testing, advocacy, and educate Black people about the coronavirus disease. It has so far raised more than $25,000 of its $50,000 goal.