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Public Health expands COVID-19 testing criteria and availability

The Ministry of Health recently expanded COVID-19 testing and now Hastings-Prince Edward Public Health is following suit.

Public Health says they are working with health care providers in the two Counties to increase the availability of assessment and testing for those who need it. “Assessment and testing are now available to more individuals who are eligible under the expanded criteria, as well as to those who are potentially experiencing mild or early signs of COVID-19,” the health unit says.

The expanded criteria include individuals who are experiencing a fever, a new or worsened cough, shortness of breath, new or worsening symptoms of territory illness like a sore throat, sneezing, nasal congestion, hoarse voice or difficulty swallowing.

“Evidence has indicated that COVID-19 may cause unusual or mild signs and symptoms, particularly in older adults and youth under age 16,” Public Health says. “These symptoms may include unexplained tiredness, delirium, falls, decreased ability to perform regular activities, worsening of chronic conditions, digestive upset, chills, headaches, decreased blood pressure, and/or rapid heartbeat. Individuals with recent onset of these symptoms are also encouraged to contact HPEPH for a risk assessment.”

An information line has been set-up by Public Health and it available from 8:30 AM until 6:30 PM on weekdays and until 4:30 PM on weekends. The number to call is 613-966-5500.

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