Who should be tested at a COVID-19 assessment centre?

Based on the Ontario Government’s current COVID-19 testing guidelines, we are assessing individuals for COVID-19 testing based on the following:

  1. Individuals with symptoms of COVID-19*
  2. Direct contacts of confirmed COVID- 19 cases** identified as:
    • A household contact (note this does not include contacts of contacts such as a friend of someone in your household)
    • Directed or recommended by public health via contact tracing or outbreak investigation
    • Notified via the COVID Alert app

You can be tested at our assessment centre even if you don’t have symptoms if you are in one of the following groups:

  • Workers in long-term care homes every two weeks. Workers in long-term care homes should not be tested more frequently than every two weeks unless directed by public health in an outbreak setting.
  • Essential caregivers visiting a long-term care home
  • Residents or workers in homeless shelters, or other congregate settings. A list of congregate settings is outlined in guidance from the Ministry of Health.
  • Pre-operative patients prior to receiving general anaesthesia and cancer patients receiving therapy as outlined in guidance from the Ministry of Health.
  • International students who have passed their 14-day quarantine period, or who have developed symptoms within their 14-day period (breaking quarantine to get a test is not encouraged but assessment centres will not turn symptomatic individuals away).
  • Farm workers
  • Indigenous communities
  • Individuals who need testing for international travel clearance (note: this is an interim measure. Please check Ontario.ca/covidtest to ensure you have the most current information).

Groups of people who are eligible for testing at assessment centres regardless of their symptoms may change from time to time. You should confirm your eligibility for a COVID-19 test with your health care provider before seeking testing.

  • Children are eligible for testing when they fulfill the following symptoms:
    • Are recommended for testing by the local public health unit
    • Are exhibiting new/worsening symptoms of:
      • Fever and/or chills
      • Cough
      • Shortness of breath
      • Decrease or loss of smell or taste
  • Exhibiting 2 or more of the following new/worsening symptoms:
    • Sore throat
    • Runny/Stuffy nose
    • Headache
    • Nausea/Vomiting/Diarrhea
    • Fatigue, lethargy, muscle aches or malaise

You must screen for COVID-19 every day before going to school/ child care. Use the school screening tool to help make this decision.

**If an asymptomatic close contact tests negative, they must remain in self-isolation for 14 days from their last exposure to the case. If they later become symptomatic within the isolation period, they should be re-tested.

The only exception is if the individual was alerted to a possible exposure by the COVID Alert app, then they must isolate until they receive their tests results. If the results are negative, they are required to self-monitor for 14 days from when they received the alert. If they later become symptomatic within the isolation period, they should be re-tested and self-isolate until they receive their test results.

Examples of who would not be eligible for testing

Please note, the following are examples of individuals do not meet testing eligibility criteria:

  • Asymptomatic individuals seeking workplace testing outside of outbreak investigations or government requirements
  • Other members of the family that do not fit the current COVID-19 testing guidance (those without eligible symptoms or who are not a contact of a confirmed COVID-19 case).
  • Asymptomatic close contacts of an individual with symptoms compatible with COVID- 19, unless the individual is confirmed as COVID -19 infected
  • Asymptomatic contacts of case contacts (close contacts of an individual who is a contact of a confirmed case of COVID-19, unless the individual is confirmed as COVID-19 infected)
  • Asymptomatic sports team member testing unless referred by public health

When visiting a COVID-19 assessment centre

When visiting the COVID-19 assessment centre, please follow public health measures, including wearing a face covering and maintain physical distance from people outside your household or social circle.