More COVID-19 testing sites opening this week in underserved parts of Memphis

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MEMPHIS, Tenn. — The Shelby County COVID-19 Task Force is opening new testing sites this week, targeting the most underserved communities.

The sites will open in areas including Frayser, South Memphis, Midtown and the Airport Area.

Those locations include: Memphis Health Center, Tri-State Healthcare, Case Management starting Tuesday and Cherokee Healthcare on Friday.

Local health experts have said the Memphis area needs universal testing to know where it the virus is, so it can be contained.

“I’m glad we can extend health in any places where needed,” Pastor Earle Fisher said, but he questioned why this is happening now. “We should’ve already gotten it there. The numbers were clear.”

The delay comes down to money, said Dr. Jeff Warren, a primary care physician who also sits on Memphis City Council.

He said private insurance companies pay for both the test kits and the staff to administer them. But government-provided healthcare like Medicaid won’t pay for the administering staff.

“So we had to get funding to get the correct supplies and the [personal protective equipment] for the people in place to do this,” Warren said.

The task force is also having the Memphis Fire Department go door-to-door to see if people qualify for a testing appointment. They plan to do that Thursday at a Memphis Housing Authority apartment complex on Beale Street.

The addresses and phone numbers for the new testing sites are below:

Church Health Center
1350 Concourse Ave.
By appointment only, 901-272-0003

Memphis Health Center
360 E.H. Crump Blvd.
By appointment only, 901-572-1573

Tri State Community Health Center
1725 Pinebrook
By appointment only, 901-572-1573

Case Management Inc.
3171 Directors Row
By appointment only, 901-821-5880 or email covid-19testcmi@cmiofmemphis.org

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