BALTIMORE — For five weeks now, the parking lot of Sacred Heart of Jesus Church has been used for free coronavirus testing. Every Wednesday, there's a line of people waiting to get tested.
Pastor Bruce Lewandowski said there's typically 400+ people waiting in line and hundreds get turned away without being tested. He said they started with 200 kits a day and now that number is down to 100 kits.
Sacred Heart of Jesus Church partnered with Build Baltimore to get more tests. They sent two letters to Governor Larry Hogan, requesting more tests and a meeting with him. WMAR talked with them last week.
The office responded and said the Lieutenant Governor would meet with them by the end of the week. Pastor Lewandowski said they want to meet with the Governor directly so they can get the tests they need immediately.
"Right now, we're standing in like the gap. City says theres no tests. Governor says there's plenty of tests. So my folks are going home without being tested and dying," said Pastor Lewandowski. He added, "so we need the Governor to stand by Baltimore, to invest in Baltimore and save lives."
So far, Pastor Lewandowski said 17 of his parishioners have died from the coronavirus and three of that 17 stood in line but were turned away because of lack of testing.
He said, just last week, a father of two was diagnosed with the coronavirus after collapsing while waiting in line to be tested. That man is now in critical condition at the hospital.