TUCSON, Ariz. -- Tents line the side of the Z Mansion in Downtown Tucson showing the University of Arizona's medical students are continuing to treat the homeless during the COVID-19 pandemic.
“We do have patients who we think do have [COVID-19] and those who are medically fragile," explained Christopher Vance, a four-year medical student.
15 people have stayed in the tents, known as the quarantine unit, according to Christian Bergman, a volunteer medical student. Eleven of those patients are currently isolated.
It's normal to see Pastor Tom and his volunteers at the Z Mansion passing out meals to the homeless a few days each week, but when the pandemic hit he made sure the homeless community knew they were there to help.
“We’re mostly doing symptomatic screenings. So anybody who is feeling any symptoms or been around somebody who has symptoms. El Rio is doing testing. So if we suspect someone needs to be tested. We will send them into a different environment," explained Vance.
Their work is making a difference for the homeless community who is learning to keep their distance during this pandemic.
“There’s about three thousand of us out on the street and the numbers are growing,” explained David Walter, a member of the homeless community.
Walter has been on the streets for five years.
"They’re helping the homeless community more than anyone else is. These people are the only ones that I’ve seen in Tucson, testing - I mean screening people," said Walter.
The homeless can stop by on Tuesday, Thursday and the weekends for a free meal.
The services provided are by donation-only, meaning food and other items.
Z Mansion does not take monetary donations.