PHILADELPHIA - Philadelphia's Black Doctors COVID-19 Consortium is offering COVID-19 testing to help protect the African American community.
Dr. Ala Stanford, pediatric surgeon and founder of the organization, advises people to make smart, safe, and calculated choices when trying to readjust back to social life.
“All I see is transmissibility and infection. Every time someone speaks and people are shoulder to shoulder, back to back, front to front. It’s just the disease propagating,” she said.
Stanford and her team are fighting to save lives during this time of unrest in America, and understanding that their willingness to help the community goes further than protesting.
“I know the risks of contracting coronavirus is so very high in that environment, so I made the choice not to go,” said Stanford. “I wanted to be present, but what I am doing is being able to offer barrier free testing to all the folks who’ve been out there protesting for greater than a week now- I need to be healthy to do that.”
Many test sites across the Philadelphia area were shut down last week after several riots. Even so, local doctors, clergy, and volunteers have come together to provide education, advocacy, and testing for African Americans who are contracting and dying from the virus at disproportionately higher rates.
“We already know around the world the numbers have gone up from the protesting. It’s only a matter of time before we see the impact here,” Stanford said.
Though there will never be a complete reversal of COVID-19 cases, Stanford says the medical attention that BDCC is providing will drastically decrease statistics.
“Some are not gonna do well and the hospitals need to be prepared for the potential surge and the testing locations need to be ready to provide access for folks to get tested. As much as emotions are running high, you have to pause and think not just about the moment, but think about tomorrow,” she said.
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