New guidelines suggest asymptomatic people should not be tested at COVID-19 assessment centres


Ontario's new COVID-19 testing guidelines say low-risk, asymptomatic people should not be considered for testing at dedicated COVID-19 assessment centres.

During a conference this morning Dr. Barbara Yaffe said the average person who has not had contact with a known case of COVID-19 and is not exhibiting symptoms should not get tested at the centres.

However, the guidelines also state targeted testing for specific asymptomatic people who are at greater risk due to their health or employment will still be available.

A release from the province reads:

"Effective immediately, Ontarians should only seek testing at assessment centres if you are:

  • Showing COVID-19 symptoms;
  • Have been exposed to a confirmed case of the virus, as informed by your public health unit or exposure notification through the COVID Alert app;
  • A resident or work in a setting that has a COVID-19 outbreak, as identified and informed by your local public health unit; and
  • Eligible for testing as part of a targeted testing initiative directed by the Ministry of Health or the Ministry of Long-Term Care."

The new guidelines come just a day after Premier Doug Ford announced some pharmacies in the province could begin testing asymptomatic people on Friday.

No pharmacies in Niagara were tapped to begin offering the testing tomorrow.

People wishing to visit loved ones in long-term care homes need to provide a negative COVID-19 test result before they can visit LTC facilities.