Jamal Bryant Megachurch Slammed For Charging For Coronavirus Tests -- Pastor Clears Things Up As Event Is Cancelled
With the Coronavirus pandemic worsening every day, the problem that seems to be quite common is how certain people and places are able to get test kits faster than others. Pastor Jamal Bryant's megachurch was aiming to fill a need in the community -- but not without backlash.
New Birth Baptist Church posted that they were offering 1000 COVID-19 tests to minorities for the price of $150. Between the understanding that tests are being used only for people that fall under a certain category and the price point of something that should be free -- the place of worship had a lot of explaining to do.
The social media page for the church explained that it would cost $125 for the testing and $25 for the assessment. The church nor pastor would be pocketing money from the event.
A new flyer went up with the details and an announcement that the testing has been postponed in order to be in compliance with what the governor ordered.
The Facebook post caused differing opinions in the comment section.
One person wrote: 'Testing is supposed to be FREE, according to our "president" and "governor". Copays and fees are supposed to be waived - not reimbursed.'
Another wrote: 'America !!! This is what happens when you have a for profit health care system !! The combination of an atomized capitalist culture that eschews a common good for mostly mythological "personal liberties" and a for-profit healthcare system that turns public health into a largely inaccessible consumer market makes the US the most vulnerable population facing a pandemic. It's a perfect storm.'
'WOW $150 for a test that’s being given for free? 🤦🏽♂️ Heck of a way to cash in on people fears smh.. And at a time when a lot of people have lost jobs and struggling just to keep food on their table,' added a disappointed follower.
One person defended the pastor for not making everything clear in the poster: 'We should know Dr. Jamal Bryant by now he is very animated the post was just to look like it's authentic he is not charging anybody for anything sometimes we Overlook look at the post he never told us when he announced that they was charging he likes to use prompts and examples. Pay attention to that post picture. Don't just pay attention to the words pay attention to the scrub uniform.'
Organizer and founder of Rowedocs explained that any time a medical test is performed -- there are lab costs that come with it. Tisha Rowe added that the church is trying to find grants and donations to help with costs.
It seems that this was a good deed that quickly reflected badly due to the lack of information that surrounded the original event.