People in Toronto are now waiting much longer for COVID-19 test results

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In typical Toronto style, getting tested for COVID-19 has recently become something that you now have to queue for hours. And if you were hoping for at least quick results, you will have to wait longer than before for these too, new data is appearing.In the spring, the province finally appeared to have hit its testing target, increasing its daily capacity to meet targets after weeks of concerns we were not testing enough people for the deadly virus.

But now that the second wave is upon us, the number of infections is accelerating, more and more people are flocking to be tested and laboratories are seeing huge backlogs.

As of October 1, only 37% of Toronto’s COVID-19 test results are processed within 48 hours, placing the city’s lab testing status – which it measures, along with a number of other factors , on its COVID-19 monitoring Dashboard – in the red zone.

For comparison, in early September that number was closer to 80%, which is the city’s minimum target to test the turnaround during that time.

And, while the city hopes to get more than 60% of patient results within 24 hours of testing, that number has also dropped significantly, falling to just 18%.

In the latest COVID statistics released by the province on Thursday morning, a healthy total of 39,646 tests had been carried out in the past day – but the results of 82,473 were still pending, the biggest backlog we’ve seen so far .

Premier Doug Ford has worked to increase the number of publicly accessible testing centers, adding 60 pharmacies across the province to the list of hospitals providing nasopharyngeal swabs.

Unfortunately, it does not appear that the processing capacity of the labs has been able to keep pace, although the provincial government continues to promise to expand it.

In the meantime, officials have demanded that only those who show symptoms or have been in close contact with a patient should get tested, and that those crowding the queues at testing centers just for the sake of the peace of mind. ‘spirit should stay at home.

“The average person who is not exposed to a case, who is not part of an outbreak, has no symptoms, should not be tested,” said Dr. Barbara Yaffe, medical officer of health in Deputy Chief of Ontario, at a press conference last week.

“There is no value. In fact, what we have found is when there is very little COVID in this group, we end up with false positives, which further complicates matters.

Donc, avant de partir passer toute votre journée dans une file d’attente à l’extérieur d’un hôpital de Toronto, demandez-vous si vous êtes vraiment qualifié pour passer un test dès maintenant – en gardant à l’esprit que la majorité de ceux qui reçoivent un diagnostic positif sont simplement invités à rester à la maison. et s’isoler de toute façon.

À tout le moins, faites un tour en voiture de votre hôpital local ou consultez un outil de suivi des temps d’attente avant de partir.



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