Volunteers needed to prepare COVID-19 testing kits for Bay Area schools

ByLeslie Brinkley KGO logo
Wednesday, September 8, 2021
Volunteers needed to accelerate COVID testing in local schools
Volunteers are desperately needed in the Bay Area to assemble coronavirus testing kits for schools.

Volunteers are desperately needed in the Bay Area to assemble coronavirus testing kits for schools.

A company called Predicine pivoted from cancer research to COVID-19 testing. Every week, they need 50,000 coronavirus tests kits assembled by volunteers.

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Everyone from couples celebrating an anniversary to boy scouts to Cal State East Bay students -- they've all offered to bag up the bar codes, a swab and a tube -- most bound for Bay Area schools.

Winston Kuo, CEO of infectious disease for Predicine, listed off the districts, "Milpitas Unified School District, Palo Alto, West Contra Costa, Dublin, Pittsburg Unified School District."

He said they test faculty, staff and students.

"Out of 650 tests administered through September 2, five had positive COVID results so we were able to work on next steps for those positive COVID cases," Sarah Lopez, spokesperson for Dublin Unified School District said.

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Predicine's lab to handle school test results is in Hayward. So far they've processed 350,000 test kits.

The company sends staff directly to school campuses to do the testing, in some cases sending high school students home with kits to use. They've partnered with a non profit called Help Test Bay Area in a bid to round up more volunteers.

"To bridge the gap for data entry to doing testing so we have doctors, nurses, PAs and web designers to just someone down the street," Founder Juner Ryan Valencia said. "Everyone from every background coming together to help the community."

Since Predicine is struggling to hire the help they need, they are relying on volunteers through the nonprofit to keep accelerating school testing into the fall semester.

Those who want to volunteer can call: 510-329-3535.

Those who want to be hired can dial here: 510-514-3176

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