May 25, 2020
Yesterday, a directive was sent to Ontario Assessment Centres to provide testing to support the early detection of individuals who have COVID-19. This type of testing will provide valuable information about the spread of the virus in different communities across the province and help in the protection of vulnerable populations and people in our area. The approach to testing will continue to evolve, based on evidence and the public health indicators that are being closely monitored.
Should you get tested?
The province is recommending that people come forward and get tested who meet the criteria below.
- All people with at least one symptom of COVID-19, even mild symptoms. Please see the list of symptoms on the assessment tool here: https://covid-19.ontario.ca/
- People who do not have symptoms but are concerned that they have been exposed to COVID-19. This includes people who are contacts of or may have been exposed to a confirmed or suspected case.
- People who do not have symptoms but feel they are at risk of exposure to COVID-19 through their employment, including essential workers (e.g., health care workers, grocery store employees, food processing plant employees).
No person who is symptomatic or who is concerned they have been exposed to COVID-19 will be declined a test at an assessment centre.
How to get tested?
The Ministry of Health will have a listing all of the assessment centres on the www.ontario.ca website for people to find assessment centres in any area. People no longer need to be referred to an assessment centre by Telehealth Ontario, Primary Care, or Public Health. Our Assessment Centres will likely experience increased volume as a result of this directive so there may be longer wait times to be tested.
- Brockville: Open to walk-ins. People can come and get a test anytime Monday to Friday 10:00am–5:30pm and Saturday and Sunday 10:00am–2:30pm
- Smiths Falls: By appointment only. Anyone can book their own appointment by calling 283-2330 extension 1401 to schedule an appointment. The telephones are answered from Monday to Friday 8:00am to 6:00pm and Saturday 10am to 4pm.
- Almonte: People do not need a referral but do need an appointment. Call 613-325-1208 to make an appointment. The hours are Monday to Saturday, from 10:00am to 6:00pm
Getting your results
- You can see your results on line at https://covid-19.ontario.ca/. You will need your Health Card number to access them.
- You will also be contacted by the health care provider that did your test.
- If you have not been contacted about your results within 7 days and do not have access to view your results online, please call the Health Unit 1-800-660-5853.
- All positive tests will be followed up by public health.
What if you are have a positive test?
- You will get guidance from the health care worker that contacts you with instructions on what to do if you had symptoms or not. If you are not hospitalized with COVID-19,this includes self-isolation for 14 days from symptom onset with no fever and resolving symptoms.
What if you have a negative result?
- If the test results say that you were negative at the time of the test, it is possible you have already been exposed to the virus and haven’t developed enough virus to test positive. You can also be exposed to this virus after the test was done. So please continue to monitor your health, watch for symptoms and get tested again if you experience symptoms.
- Follow public health precautions:
- Stay home as much as possible
- Practice physical distancing – stay 2m (6ft) away from people in public areas
- Use a face covering/cloth mask if you cannot stay 2m (6ft) away from people when out in public
- Wash your hands often with soap and water, or use hand sanitizer after being in touch with others or handling anything from outside your home
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth
- Cover your cough and sneeze with a tissue or into your arm, not your hands
- Do not share personal items that come into contact with saliva such as toothbrushes, eating utensils, drinks, water bottles, and towels
The Health Unit has staff answering COVID-19 related questions and concerns for the public from 8:30am to 4:30pm every day at 1-800-660-5853 extension 2499. Public Health Inspectors are also available to discuss environmental health concerns. You can also get more information about COVID-19 by visiting www.healthunit.org/coronavirus or by connecting with LGLHealthUnit on Facebook and Twitter.
For media interviews, contact: Susan Healey, Communications Co-ordinator, 613-802-0550 or firstname.lastname@example.org.