(Wednesday, Oct. 21, 2020) – Mayor Lovely Warren today announced that nearly a thousand people benefited from the no-cost COVID testing and flu shot clinics set up at select Rochester churches over the past two weeks. The initiative provided Rochester’s minority communities with additional opportunities to access to these services during the pandemic as the area prepares for the upcoming influenza season.
“I am delighted with the outstanding results of this initiative, which allowed families to help protect their circles and prepare for the coming wave of flu season,” said Mayor Warren. “We know that communities of color are disproportionately impacted by COVID-19 and we need to continue building equity for these historically disadvantaged populations. We have received positive feedback from many community members, which is a testament to the hard work and determination of all of our partners in this effort. I am truly grateful and appreciative to the churches and pastors, our volunteers, health systems, community groups, the County of Monroe and New York State for making this program a resounding success.”
The COVID testing and flu shot initiative ran for 12 days at four Rochester churches: Aenon Missionary Baptist Church, Greater Harvest Church, Memorial AME Zion Church and House of Prayer and Restoration. Participants also received general health screenings.
Testing and flu shots were provided at no cost to participants. Wegmans and the Monroe County Department of Public Health covered the cost of flu shots for those without health insurance; Rochester Regional Health and the University of Rochester Medical Center are covering the cost of staffing to collect samples; and the New York State Department of Health is providing and covering the cost of tests and supplies for COVID-19 testing as well as processing the tests.
Clinicians screened 941 people, conducted 764 COVID tests and administered 466 flu shots. Participants also received education on substance-abuse; Narcan training and kits; voter and census information; as well as other human services.
Community members are encouraged to get a flu shot to protect themselves during this flu season as well as sign up for the ROC COVID symptom tracker (roccovid.org).
The COVID and flu shot initiative was sponsored by the City, N.Y. State Department of Health, Monroe County and Rapid Response Team members, which include the Black Physicians Network of Greater Rochester, Rochester Black Nurses Association, Common Ground Health, Finger Lakes Performing Provider System, Jordan Health, Ibero American Action League, Rochester Regional Health, Regional Health Reach, University of Rochester and Wegmans.