ONTARIO TO SHIFT TESTING FOCUS TO VULNERABLE GROUPS

Apr 10, 2020

By Jeremy Logan

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Ontario plans to shift its focus from testing patients at assessment centres to targeting those who are most vulnerable to COVID-19, including residents of long-term care homes and health-care workers.

Provincial officials say that as the capacity for testing increases from the current 4,000 per day to a goal of 16,000 by early May, more of the tests will go towards groups at a greater risk.

They say that by May 6th only a quarter of the 16,000 people they hope to be testing will have been referred to assessment centres.

The rest will go to symptomatic members of at-risk populations, including those in Indigenous and remote communities, people who live in homeless shelters or prisons, and health-care workers.

But officials say that testing everyone including the asymptomatic is of little use, because it could result in false negatives.

The province made the announcement as the number of cases surged to 6,237 a jump of 478 and the number of deaths reached 222.

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