SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – An event will be held Monday at the North End Cumberland Home Apartments for residents to receive free COVID-19 tests and the flu vaccine.
The COVID-19 testing will be administered by the Caring Heath Center and the flu shots will be given by Springfield Pharmacy.
The Open Pantry will also be providing a box of food and care bags with health and prevention information provided by the Commonwealth Care Alliance. Residents will also be provided with masks, sanitizer, and reusable bags from a Better Life Home Care and Beacon Property Management.
In a news release sent to 22News from State Representative Carlos Gonzalez, the Latino community is disproportionately impacted, especially those residing in high-density neighborhoods. Although testing is now more available in Springfield, many low-income residents who have no transportation are not able to get tested.
“For the last five months, I have been calling for more community-based COVID testing in high-density low-income communities where many essential low-income workers reside” State Representative Carlos Gonzalez said.
Springfield’s population has continued to change; 70% are Latinos and African American. Springfield has seen a spike in positive cases.
“If we are going to turn the tide we need to include a bi-lingual and culturally appropriate outreach strategy. In addition, the city should consider establishing a citywide diverse COVID Task Force which includes medical experts and diverse community leaders from Springfield” Representative Carlos Gonzalez added.
The testing is available for residents from 11:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m. To find a testing site near you visit Mass.gov.