coronavirus testing

Canada is now operating drive-thru coronavirus test clinics

Following the lead of countries like the U.K.South KoreaGermany and the U.S., Canada has opened up drive-thru coronavirus assessment centres in select locations across the country.

The facilities will help limit potential COVID-19 exposure to others in hospital while also expediting the testing process.

After pre-screening to determine if individuals meet the criteria to be tested — which usually requires a physician's referral — patients show up at a scheduled time to answer a series of health questions and undergo a quick nasal swab from the comfort and safety of their own vehicles.

Results are then sent to them via phone or email, allowing people to return home to self-quarantine.

Currently, there are drive-thru assessment centres operating in Edmonton, Calgary and Victoria, with plans for more to open in the coming days.

Many hospitals nationwide are also running stand-alone coronavirus testing centres to isolate potential COVID-19 patients from others seeking medical treatment in emergency rooms and doctors' offices.

The COVID-19 Community Assessment Centre at Toronto's Michael Garron Hospital is one of the locations that may soon see a drive-thru component.

As the supply of nasal swab kits remains tight amid high global demand, it is important that these clinics remain appointment-only and are reserved only for probable, at-risk cases that require testing.

The number of such drive-thru operations will depend on the extent to which drastically increased and faster testing becomes necessary in Canada.

Lead photo by

UW Medicine

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