Ontario has delivered 12.3 million rapid antigen test kits for COVID-19 to over 2,600 worksites across the province.
“Giving businesses access to rapid tests kits quickly while streamlining program and reporting requirements is allowing them to manage to test on-site with ease and helping stop the virus before it gets into the workplace,” Vic Fedeli, Minister of Economic Development, Job Creation and Trade said in a statement. “We urge businesses who want to stop the spread, stay open, and save lives to order kits today.”
A recent success of the antigen screening program came with the involvement of the Ontario Chamber of Commerce. Less than a month after the launch of its COVID-19 Rapid Screening Initiative, Ontario has shipped nearly 2.4 million kits to local chambers. These kits will help small and medium-sized businesses across the province stay safe and stay open, according to the statement.
“Rapid test screening for small and medium-sized businesses is a key tool to help keep businesses open and workers safe,” said Prabmeet Sarkaria, Associate Minister of Small Business and Red Tape Reduction. “For essential businesses that are allowed to stay open and require staff to be on-site, rapid antigen screening at the workplace can give peace of mind and ensure operations continue steadily and safely in businesses across Ontario, and especially in hotspot areas.”
Businesses are encouraged to get their own rapid antigen screening kits by contacting their local chamber of commerce or by registering at ontario.ca/testingonsite.
“Our staff feels that we, as an employer, really do care about their wellbeing and see the Provincial Antigen Screening Program as a positive way to do their part, not only for the company but for their families and communities as well,” said Christopher Stone, Health Safety and Disability Specialist at Ross Video. “From a public health standpoint, the more active participants that are enrolled in the program, the better the outcomes are for all of us.”
Rapid antigen screening goes hand in hand with public health measures, such as symptom screening, physical distancing, masking, and hand hygiene. Any positive results from a rapid antigen point-of-care test must be confirmed with laboratory-based polymerase chain reaction (PCR) testing.