Three community leaders in Huntsville are combining to provide free COVID-19 testing for underserved communities in the Rocket City.
Alabama A&M University, Huntsville Hospital and Toyota are developing the initiative that will provide up to 50 coronavirus tests per day at the mobile medical clinic that will be deployed to neighborhood locations and serve walk-in patients.
Toyota made the announcement Thursday.
“We are grateful for this incredible support and partnership with Toyota and Alabama A&M University,”
David Spillers, CEO of Huntsville Hospital Health System, said in the announcement. “Our health system exists to serve our communities. This partnership enables our organizations to provide vital health care services to our underserved population.”
According to the Toyota announcement, the collaboration evolved from a partnership established in 2018 between Toyota and Alabama A&M to identify and solve mobility-related community needs. Toyota provided grant funding and Toyota Way training to support a student-led program where assessments and research were conducted to determine the need and develop a solution.
Alabama A&M is allocating $100,000 of its grant funding from Toyota to the Huntsville Hospital Foundation to finance the mobile testing program.
The hospital has offered to provide clinical services and training for Alabama A&M students in the field.
"This initiative is one more of the many outreach efforts on the part of the University to improve the lives of our citizens. Education must be holistic, addressing all factors that contribute to the advancement, including ensuring a healthy populace," Alabama A&M President Andrew Hugine said in the announcement.
The announcement said that the mobile medical clinic, comprised of two mobile units, will work collaboratively with the city of Huntsville’s COVID-19 response plan and goals to increase local testing options that do not require doctor’s orders. In the future, the unit will have the capacity to provide preventative care and health screening services.
“Increased testing is vital to slowing the spread of the virus, but not everyone can access current testing
Sites,” Dave Finch, Toyota Alabama president, said in the announcement. “For Toyota, mobility is more than just moving people from point A to point B, it’s also about finding better ways to bring critical services to people. Bringing together the right partners to better serve the community is something we are continuously looking to do.”
©2020 Alabama Media Group, Birmingham