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Los Angeles offers free virus tests for all residents


Jose Vatres (R) holds his son Aidin who reacts as nurse practitioner Alexander Panis (L) takes a nasal swab sample to test for COVID-19 at a mobile testing station in a public school parking area in Compton, California, just south of Los Angeles, on April 28, 2020. – St. John’s Well Child and Family Center is providing COVID-19 testing sites in African-American and Latino communities which have been neglected in terms of testing as compared to wealthier areas of Los Angeles County. (Photo by Robyn Beck / AFP)

Los Angeles will offer free coronavirus tests to all residents regardless of whether they show any symptoms, Mayor Eric Garcetti said.

“Announcing that L.A. is now the first major city in America to offer free COVID-19 testing to all residents,” Garcetti tweeted Wednesday.

Priority will be given to those with symptoms and front-line workers but individuals without symptoms can also be tested.


Along with hand-washing and social distancing “testing is one of the best tools that we have to stop the spread of this virus,” Garcetti said at his daily briefing.

Working-class people and those living in poverty in Los Angeles are suffering disproportionate rates of infection and had the highest rates of death per capita in the county, he said, citing a health department report.

“While the virus can infect everybody, it doesn’t affect everybody equally,” he said.

Residents can sign up online to schedule a test.

Los Angeles County reported 1,541 new cases Wednesday, Garcetti said, bringing its total to 23,485 infections and 1,056 deaths.


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