Ontario to stop free COVID-19 rapid test program in pharmacies, grocery stores

Malgré l'arrivée de quelques boîtes dans certaines pharmacies jeudi et vendredi, la patience est de mise si vous n'avez pas encore votre trousse.

Seulement 60 000 boîtes supplémentaires débarquent dans 7 centres de distribution qui se chargeront de les répartir dans certains points de service. Mais c'est très peu pour répondre à la demande de la population.

TORONTO - An Ontario program that distributes free rapid tests for COVID-19 at grocery stores and pharmacies will end after this month.

The Ministry of Health wrote in a memo to the retailers recently that with lower rates of COVID-19, high vaccination rates and decreasing demand for tests, the program will wind down as of June 30.

The ministry is encouraging grocery stores and pharmacies to place final orders by June 16.

However, the ministry says free rapid tests will still be distributed in some "high priority" communities through organizations such as community health centres and Ontario Health Teams until Dec. 31.

The ministry says the extended distribution of tests will go toward groups that represent people at the highest risk for severe outcomes of COVID-19.

NDP health critic France Gelinas says the tests should continue to be available to people who need them, and there are vulnerable people across the province.