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Health Unit ramping up testing

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The North Bay Parry Sound District Health Unit is ratcheting up COVID-19 testing.

Officials say between April 13 and 19, testing more than doubled when compared to the previous seven days. The health unit was already testing the general public who were experiencing symptoms, there will be more proactive tests done with several priority groups including:

  • Hospital inpatients
  • Residents of long-term care and retirement homes
  • Health care workers, caregivers, care providers, paramedics, and first responders, including police and firefighters
  • Remote, isolated, rural and Indigenous communities
  • Other congregate living centres, including homeless shelters, prisons, and group homes
  • Specific vulnerable populations, including patients undergoing chemotherapy or hemodialysis and requiring transplants, as well as pregnant persons, newborns, and cross-border workers
  • Other essential workers, as defined by provincial orders

“Due to a global supply shortage and initial laboratory testing capacity issues the province was unable to test as frequently as we would have liked,” said Dr. Chirico, Medical Officer of Health of the North Bay Parry Sound District Health Unit. “Now that supplies are available the increased testing will help determine how prevalent COVID-19 is in our region.”

Officials add that individuals who are experiencing symptoms are to call their health care provider, telehealth, or the health unit before they are referred to a testing or assessment centre. As there are currently no specific treatment for COVID-19, those that are mildly ill are asked to isolate and care for themselves at home.

Locally there have been 1,211 tests conducted with 16 positive cases, and 11 resolved. Two are hospitalized.

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