Province To Open Temporary And Mobile COVID-19 Assessment Centers

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Nova Scotia’s chief medical officer of health told Nova Scotians on Sunday that new testing methods for COVID-19 are being implemented.

Dr. Robert Strang says temporary assessment centers will be opened in some communities with outbreaks if needed.

“We now know that this disease is rife in our communities. This is why we are adjusting our testing strategy. We want to have more options to identify and test COVID-19 in communities“, He said during a live webcast.

Strang said the first of these centers opened today in Elmsdale. He said these testing facilities are not accessible to walk-in patients and that patients need an 811 reference to get there.

“We have to be flexible and be able to respond quickly to the path that this disease can take in any community in Nova Scotia,” said Strang.When we identify communities where our surveillance suggests an increase in disease activity, we can organize temporary assessment centers if there is no center nearby. ”

The best doctor said these clinics would help minimize the risk of spreading COVID-19 in hospitals.

The length of time these temporary assessment centers will remain open in a community will depend on the activity of the disease we detect and the needs of the community., ” he said.

However, Strang told the public that we should be careful not to distinguish the places.

“We must also pay attention to the stigma and labeling of communities,” he said.

The province will also start using mobile test units, which Strang says will target communities that don’t have enough space for test facilities.

“It would be a portable unit in a large truck that could be brought temporarily to the communities for testing,” he said.

In addition, the EHS will use mobile units to conduct test clusters in retirement homes or for people with reduced mobility. The EHS currently has two such vehicles, one in the Regional Municipality of Halifax and one in the Regional Municipality of Cape Breton.

“A decision on where and how to deploy these units will be made in a public health, 811 and EHS discussion, situation by situation,” said Strang.

Strang also noted that regular testing at the QEII Health Sciences Center’s microbiology lab will run 24 hours a day, 7 days a week starting tomorrow, April 6.

“This will allow them to process more than 1,000 tests per day if necessary,” said Strang.

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