Religious leaders host free COVID-19 testing statewide

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CONWAY, SC (WBTW) – Several African Methodist Episcopal pastors have been hosting free COVID-19 testing sites across the state.

Pastor William Miller, who’s hosting a site in Conway, hopes the effort will help those in need, especially in minority communities.

According to the CDC, coronavirus poses a higher death risk for communities of color compared to other ethnicities.

Hypertension, obesity, and diabetes – commonly found in those communities – are underlying conditions that increase health risks in COVID-19 patients.

“Even though testing has been done in Conway, we’re finding that with increased opportunities for testing, we’re more aware of who’s been impacted by it, who’s had it, who currently has it,” Miller explained.

This is the first time the 7th Episcopal District of A.M.E. Church has hosted COVID-19 testing sites across the state. Miller hopes local churches will be able to provide more testing sites and resources for the community.

“That’s one of the major differences as far as churches being able to go on their own or finding an umbrella or parent organization that is able to sponsor and provide the testing,” Miller explained. “It’s just about access. Giving people access to testing.”

Miller, pastor of Bethel A.M.E. Church, said that a combination of antibody and viral tests will be used at the at the Conway Recreation Center on Friday from 5-8 p.m.

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