SLO and Santa Barbara counties roll out new COVID-19 testing pop-up clinics

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Residents of Guadalupe, Cambria, and Los Osos will soon have a chance to be tested for COVID-19 without leaving their hometowns.

A push to expand free COVID-19 testing opportunities to underserved communities begins in the city of Guadalupe on May 30 and 31.

The pop-up clinic, which will be run by Community Health Centers, is open from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. on both days at 4719 W. Main St. The test is free, walk-ins are welcome, and anyone is eligible to get one. Make an appointment at (805) 343-5577.
MORE TESTING New COVID-19 test sites are coming to SLO and Santa Barbara counties, similar to this state-sponsored clinic in Grover Beach. - FILE PHOTO COURTESY OF MATT BRONSON
  • FILE PHOTO COURTESY OF MATT BRONSON
  • MORE TESTING New COVID-19 test sites are coming to SLO and Santa Barbara counties, similar to this state-sponsored clinic in Grover Beach.

In San Luis Obispo County, free testing will be available on its North Coast starting next week. A mobile test site will open in the Cambria Veterans’ Memorial Hall on June 1 and June 2, and then move to the Los Osos Red Barn on June 3 and 4.



The new floating clinic is a partnership between SLO County and Los Angeles-based nonprofit U.S. Health Fairs.

After its stay on the North Coast, the site will move to Atascadero for the week of June 8. Any resident, regardless of symptoms, can sign up for a test at readyslo.org.

“Again, the testing is free,” SLO County Public Health Officer Penny Borenstein said at a May 29 press briefing. “We’ve opened it to people who are asymptomatic. We’ve opened the floodgates to testing.”

The new SLO County test sites arrive amid a recent decline in testing numbers. SLO County’s May 29 report of 152 new tests marked the lowest daily uptick in more than a week. Daily counts were below average throughout the week of May 25.

Starting June 8, a state-sponsored test clinic in Paso Robles will relocate to the city of San Luis Obispo, a move that is a direct result of lackluster demand.

Borenstein said the state had planned to move the clinic out of the county entirely due to the lack of interest.

“[We asked] ‘If we get our numbers up in another location, will you stay here?’” Boresntein said. “We know there’s a lot of interest in [San Luis Obispo]. We really want to retain the state resource that’s available.”

The SLO test site will be stationed at the SLO Vets’ Hall.

Borenstein continued to encourage residents to get tested, while also noting that getting a test now doesn’t prevent locals from getting another in the future.



“A one-and-done is not the right approach,” she said. “Getting tested on any particular day is a point in time; it’s looking for virus in your system on any particular day. That doesn’t mean you might not receive infection at some point in the future, even possibly the next day.” ∆

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