Coronavirus Canada Updates: No COVID-19 testing in Ottawa, eastern Ontario until Tuesday

Coronavirus Canada Updates: Students in southern Ontario will not return to class for in-person learning until Jan. 25
Coronavirus Canada Updates: Students in southern Ontario will not return to class for in-person learning until Jan. 25

You can no longer just walk-in or drive-up to a COVID-19 assessment centre to be tested for COVID-19.

Ontario is eliminating walk-in testing at assessment centres in Ottawa and across Ontario and moving to a new appointment-based system in a move designed to eliminate wait times and unnecessary testing.

On Sunday and Monday, assessment centres in Ottawa and eastern Ontario will not accept walk-in or drive-up patients for testing for novel coronavirus.

Starting Tuesday, patients with COVID-19 symptoms will need to call one of Ontario’s assessment centres and speak to a nurse practitioner for screening before making an appointment for a test.

The province says discontinuing walk-in testing service until Tuesday will allow the province’s lab network to make significant progress in processing tests and allow assessment centres time to reset, deep clean and prepare for the new appointment-based model.

Premier Doug Ford said Friday that the move from walk-in to appointment testing should help reduce the testing line-ups and cut down on the processing backlog.

Ontario’s move to discontinue walk-in testing means the only testing options available in Ottawa and eastern Ontario on Sunday and Monday are places that offer appointments.

The COVID-19 drive-thru testing centre at RCGT Park and the CHEO clinic at the COVID-19 assessment centre at Brewer Arena offer appointment service.

In Kingston, the COVID-19 Community Assessment Centre at Beechgrove Complex is using a manual appointment system on Sunday and Monday, with patients being screened by staff and assigned an appointment time. A new online booking system is expected to be ready on Tuesday.

The Eastern Ontario Health Unit says the COVID-19 testing centre at Calypso Waterpark in Limoges will be closed on Sunday and Monday. The Casselman testing centre will be closed on Monday.

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