© 2021 KALW
KALW Public Media / 91.7 FM Bay Area
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
Available On Air Stations

Oakland Expands Free COVID-19 Testing For All

Coronavirus testing tents outside of Roots Community Health Center in East Oakland


A new, free, and open to all COVID-19 test site opened on May 6th, 2020 in East Oakland. 

The drive by clinic is located at the Roots Community Health Center in deep east Oakland. There are currently 30 test sites in Alameda County, but until now they have been exclusive to first responders, insurance networks, or the homeless population. This is the first site in Alameda County open to anyone who wants to be tested, and it’s free. 

The clinic is the result of a partnership between Roots, the City of Oakland and the nonprofit CORE—Community Organized Relief Effort. They plan to open a second site soon in East Oakland.

The driveby clinic uses Verily, a platform created by Google’s parent company. Anyone who wants to be tested can make an account, schedule a free appointment, and bring their ID. Established Roots patients can simply walk up and be tested. 

According to local news site Berkeleyside, Roots’ CEO says that East Oakland communities can feel distrustful of institutions, but in the last 12 years Roots has become very trusted in the community. 

The clinic is open on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays, from 10am to 4pm, at the Roots Community Health Center on International Boulevard. Find out more on oaklandca.gov.