The city of Irvine announced that more appointments are now available for the public at the Great Park COVID-19 testing site.

The announcement was via Instagram on Thursday, July 23, explaining that more appointments would become available on Friday, July 24, at 12:00 p.m.

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At the direction of the Irvine City Council, COVID-19 testing capacity at the Great Park has been expanded and we are now able to reopen registration tomorrow, Friday, July 24, at 12 p.m. to fill additional appointments available through this expansion.   Before you make an appointment here are a few things to know:   📌Testing is available for individuals who live or work in Irvine, regardless of whether they are symptomatic or asymptomatic.   📌Testing is by appointment only and is available Mondays through Thursdays from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. in Lot 6 at the Great Park.  📌Only PCR testing, which determines if someone currently has the SARS-CoV-2 virus, is available.   📌There is no out of pocket fee for this COVID-19 testing.  To sign up for an appointment, visit curogram.com/covid-testing/irvine. Please note that Chrome and Firefox are the preferred web browsers for registering.   For more information, including information needed for registration, please visit our FAQ page at cityofirvine.org/covid19testing.  .  .  .  #covid19testing #covid19 #irvine #cityofirvine

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Irvine became the first city to offer free COVID-19 testing to the public in Orange County.

However, appointments for the Great Park COVID-19 testing site quickly became full. Residents expressed frustration at how fast appointments became unavailable.

Introduced by the Irvine City Council on July 10, Great Park COVID-19 testing site has the capacity for approximately  200-260 tests per-day.

Still, the road to free COVID-19 testing in Irvine has been turbulent. Considering the city approved, then cancelled a $95,000 COVID-19 testing program citing accuracy concerns.

Councilmember Melissa Fox reassured the community that registration would reopen once the first batch of appointments is processed.

“I wish that we could provide 10 times more testing than we have, particularly given how fast it has booked up,” Fox said during the July 14 City Council meeting. “I really appreciate that we’re looking forward to an expansion of this program as fast as possible.”

Despite the push for free testing to residents and workers in the city, Irvine has seen significant increases in COVID-19 cases.

From June to July, Irvine COVID-19 cases increased by more than 600, jumping from 242 reported on June 16 — to 907, reported on July 16.

On Thursday, July 24 Irvine reported 22 new COVID-19 cases, bringing the city’s total to 1,062 including 8 cumulative deaths.