Denver Public Schools and Denver Health Announce Free COVID-19 Testing for Students
Oct. 15, 2020
DENVER – Denver Health’s School-based Health Centers (SBHC) and Denver Public Schools (DPS) announced today that students throughout the entire district will now have access to free COVID-19 tests at any of the four Denver Health testing sites, starting immediately.
The move is the latest effort by the district and Denver Health’s public health leaders to ensure and enhance the safety of staff, students and families. Free COVID-19 testing will be provided if a student is symptomatic and has been screened and recommended for a test. The primary goal of testing is to provide the safest environment for in-person learning and for the district to be able to adequately respond and limit the potential exposure and spread. Access to testing also creates a proper chain of information to public health officials to conduct contact tracing and provide guidance on quarantining.
“By providing testing to kids we can prioritize them and thus, prioritize a safe and successful environment for them to be in school,” said Dr. Steve Federico, Director General Pediatrics and School & Community Programs, Denver Health. “For the last 33 years, Denver Health has worked to build a ‘no wrong door approach’ when it comes to providing access to healthcare for our students. This is just the latest way we are expanding that care and making it accessible, no matter your circumstances.”
As Denver Public Schools welcomes more students back for in-person learning, free testing will provide a critical resource for students and families.
“Thanks to our community partnerships, we can now provide free testing for both staff and students,” said DPS Superintendent Susana Cordova. “This will help us to create safer school environments, limit the disruptions to student learning and provide access to healthcare supports for our students.”
Testing for students will be available for same day appointments, including Saturday, with a 24-hour turn around at the following Denver Health locations:
Federico F. Pena Southwest Family Health Center and Urgent Care
Lowry Family Health Center
Montbello Family Health Center
Rita Bass Trauma and EMS Education Institute
Prior to an appointment for testing, parents and students will need to complete their schools’ daily health screening. If a student fails a health screening, or is showing symptoms of illness, students will be directed to next steps should a test be necessary.