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Ontario announces COVID-19 testing to be expanded to pharmacies

Click to play video 'COVID-19 testing expanding to pharmacies in Ontario' COVID-19 testing expanding to pharmacies in Ontario
The Ford government has unveiled the second component of its fall preparedness plan – expanding COVID-19 testing to pharmacies. Ford says the province is doing what it can to help decrease wait times at assessment centres, but is also expressing frustration with Health Canada. Miranda Anthistle explains.

The Ontario government has announced that pharmacies will begin offering COVID-19 tests to people who aren’t experiencing symptoms of the virus as part of its fall preparedness plan.

Starting Friday, people with no symptoms of the coronavirus can visit up to 60 pharmacies in Toronto, Ottawa, Brampton, Mississauga, Markham and Huntsville by appointment only for free testing.

Read more: Ontario reports 335 new coronavirus cases, 69% under the age of 40

The government says more pharmacy locations will make testing available in the coming weeks.

“Expanding testing to pharmacies is part of our plan to ensure that we are ready for future waves of COVID-19,” Ontario’s health minister and deputy premier, Christine Elliott, said at a press conference Wednesday.

“With a recent increase in the number of cases, we are providing people with more options for testing to identify cases of COVID-19 early.”

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Ontario Premier Doug Ford said his government is working with its health partners to expand options for coronavirus tests, including saliva tests.

Ford said three hospitals in Ontario have agreed to offer the saliva testing option: Mount Sinai Hospital, Women’s College and UHN.

“We’re working to expand these options to even more hospitals, pharmacies and other test sites,” he added.

List of pharmacies that will offer COVID-19 testing Friday:

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Shoppers Drug Mart, 160 Main Street South, Brampton, ON L6W 2E1, (905) 451-0111, https://stores.shoppersdrugmart.ca/en/store/705/
Shoppers Drug Mart, 10665 Bramalea Road, Brampton, ON, L6R 3P4, (905) 793-2011, https://stores.shoppersdrugmart.ca/en/store/1447/
Shoppers Drug Mart, 34 A Avondale Boulevard, Brampton, ON, L6T 1H3, (905) 793-4444,  https://stores.shoppersdrugmart.ca/en/store/701/
Shoppers Drug Mart, 366 Main Street North, Brampton, ON, L6V 1P8, (905) 456-0167, https://stores.shoppersdrugmart.ca/en/store/1353/
Shoppers Drug Mart, 10048 McLaughlin Road, Brampton, ON, L7A 2X6, (905) 846-4444, https://stores.shoppersdrugmart.ca/en/store/1199/
Shoppers Drug Mart, 1 Kennedy Road South, Brampton, ON, L6W 3C9, (905) 454-4464,  https://stores.shoppersdrugmart.ca/en/store/1058/
Shoppers Drug Mart, 3938 Cottrelle Boulevard, Brampton, ON, L6P 2R1, (905) 794-7071, https://stores.shoppersdrugmart.ca/en/store/1326/
Shoppers Drug Mart, 1180 Walkley Road, Ottawa, ON, K1V 2M5, (613) 737-3344, https://stores.shoppersdrugmart.ca/en/store/620/
Shoppers Drug Mart, 647 Earl Armstrong Road, Ottawa, ON, K1V 2G2, (613) 822-6746, https://stores.shoppersdrugmart.ca/en/store/1161/
Shoppers Drug Mart, 455 Bank Street, Ottawa, ON, K2P 1Y9, (613) 238-9041, https://stores.shoppersdrugmart.ca/en/store/1428/
Shoppers Drug Mart, 541 Montreal Road, Ottawa, ON, K1K 0V1, (613) 740-0616, https://stores.shoppersdrugmart.ca/en/store/641/
Shoppers Drug Mart, 3940 Innes Road, Orleans, ON, K1W 1K9, (613) 834-7383, https://stores.shoppersdrugmart.ca/en/store/1139/
Shoppers Drug Mart, 2954 St. Joseph Boulevard, Orleans, ON, K1C 1G7, (613) 841-1535, https://stores.shoppersdrugmart.ca/en/store/1230/
Shoppers Drug Mart, 1630 Danforth Avenue, Toronto, ON, M4C 1H6, (416) 461-2453, https://stores.shoppersdrugmart.ca/en/store/500/
Shoppers Drug Mart, 1601 Bayview Avenue, East York, ON, M4G 3B5, (416) 489-1873, https://stores.shoppersdrugmart.ca/en/store/982/
Shoppers Drug Mart, 1027 Yonge Street, Toronto, ON, M4W 2K9, (416) 961-0155, https://stores.shoppersdrugmart.ca/en/store/926/
Shoppers Drug Mart, 3446 Dundas Street West, Toronto, ON, M6S 2S1, (416) 766-8131, https://stores.shoppersdrugmart.ca/en/store/1166/
Shoppers Drug Mart, 1400 Dupont Street, Toronto, ON, M6H 2B2, (416) 532-9214, https://stores.shoppersdrugmart.ca/en/store/1304/
Shoppers Drug Mart, 360A Bloor Street West, Toronto, ON, M5S 1X1, (416) 961-2121, https://stores.shoppersdrugmart.ca/en/store/806/
Shoppers Drug Mart, 123 Rexdale Boulevard, Etobicoke, ON, M9W 1P1, (416) 743-1645, https://stores.shoppersdrugmart.ca/en/store/857/
Shoppers Drug Mart, 900 Albion Road, Etobicoke, ON, M9V 1A5, (416) 741-2430, https://stores.shoppersdrugmart.ca/en/store/954/
Shoppers Drug Mart, 6975 Meadowvale Town Centre Circle, Mississauga, ON, L5N 2W7, (905) 826-7112, https://stores.shoppersdrugmart.ca/en/store/779/
Shoppers Drug Mart, 101 – 5602 Tenth Line West, Mississauga, ON, L5M 5S5, (905) 858-4618, https://stores.shoppersdrugmart.ca/en/store/1147/
Shoppers Drug Mart, 1 – 5425 Creditview Road, Mississauga, ON, L5V 2P3, (905) 858-8711, https://stores.shoppersdrugmart.ca/en/store/791/
Shoppers Drug Mart, 7070 Mclaughlin Road, Mississauga, ON, L5W 1W7, (905) 696-9791, https://stores.shoppersdrugmart.ca/en/store/902/
Shoppers Drug Mart, 4841 Yonge Street, North York, ON, M2N 5X2, (416) 222-1174, https://stores.shoppersdrugmart.ca/en/store/986/
Shoppers Drug Mart, 5095 Yonge Street, Toronto, ON, M2N 6Z4, (416) 226-0313, https://stores.shoppersdrugmart.ca/en/store/1250/
Shoppers Drug Mart, 3874 Bathurst Street, North York, ON, M3H 3N3, (416) 635-5601, https://stores.shoppersdrugmart.ca/en/store/838/
Shoppers Drug Mart, 2550 Finch Avenue West, North York, ON, M9M 2G3, (416) 749-5271, https://stores.shoppersdrugmart.ca/en/store/854/
Shoppers Drug Mart, 1937 Portobello Boulevard, Orleans, ON, K4A 4W9, (613) 590-1626, https://stores.shoppersdrugmart.ca/en/store/1254/
Shoppers Drug Mart, 2751 Eglinton Avenue East, Scarborough, ON, M1J 2C7, (416) 267-8211, https://stores.shoppersdrugmart.ca/en/store/859/
Shoppers Drug Mart, 629 Markham Road, Scarborough, ON, M1H 2A4, (416) 439-2121, https://stores.shoppersdrugmart.ca/en/store/800/
Shoppers Drug Mart, 2301 Kingston Road, Scarborough, ON, M1N 1V1, (416) 269-2171, https://stores.shoppersdrugmart.ca/en/store/1382/
Shoppers Drug Mart, Unit A -1780 Markham Road, Scarborough, ON, M1B 2W2, (416) 412-1780, https://stores.shoppersdrugmart.ca/en/store/1381/
Shoppers Drug Mart, 579 Lakeshore Road East, Mississauga, ON, L5G 1H9, (905) 278-5506, https://stores.shoppersdrugmart.ca/en/store/1275/
Shoppers Drug Mart, 3980 Grand Park Drive, Mississauga, ON, L5B 4M6, (905) 566-9600, https://stores.shoppersdrugmart.ca/en/store/908/
Shoppers Drug Mart, 2470 Hurontario Street, Mississauga, ON, L5B 0H2, (905) 896-2500, https://stores.shoppersdrugmart.ca/en/store/776/
Shoppers Drug Mart, 700 Burnhamthorpe Road East, Mississauga, ON, L4Y 2X3, (905) 279-1812, https://stores.shoppersdrugmart.ca/en/store/774/
Shoppers Drug Mart, 1 – 2148 Carling Avenue, Ottawa, ON, K2A 1H1, (613) 725-9990, https://stores.shoppersdrugmart.ca/en/store/622/
Shoppers Drug Mart, 1309 Carling Avenue, Ottawa, ON, K1Z 7L3, (613)-722-4277, https://stores.shoppersdrugmart.ca/en/store/628/
Shoppers Drug Mart, 1102 Klondike Road, Kanata, ON, K2K 1X7, (613) 592-6010, https://stores.shoppersdrugmart.ca/en/store/1324/
Shoppers Drug Mart, 51 King William Street, Huntsville, ON, P1H 1G4, (705) 789-4471, https://stores.shoppersdrugmart.ca/en/store/647/
Shoppers Drug Mart, 11965 Hurontario Street, Brampton, ON, L6Z 4P7, (905) 495-0311, https://stores.shoppersdrugmart.ca/en/store/1177/?utm_source=G&utm_ medium=lpm&utm_campaign=LPM_SDM
Cedarview Pharmacy, 12 – 4100 Strandherd Drive, Nepean, ON, K2J 0V2, (613) 823-1700, http://myownpharmacy.ca/guardian
Medicine Shoppe 134, 2600 Eglinton Avenue West, Toronto, ON, M6M 1T5, (416) 651-6511, https://www.medicineshoppe.ca/en/ontario/toronto/the-medicine-shoppe- pharmacy-1347014226?utm_source=Google&utm_medium =maps&utm_campaign=Local_Presence
Medicine Shoppe 143, 19 – 5303 Canotek Road, Ottawa, ON, K1J 9M1, (613) 745-5905, https://www.medicineshoppe.ca/en/ontario/ottawa/the-medicine-shoppe-pharmacy-143-7009763
Village Square Pharmacy, 2942 Finch Avenue East, Scarborough, ON, M1W 2T4, (416) 492-4167, https://www.guardian-ida-pharmacies.ca/en/ontario/scarborough/village-square-pharmacy-7005106
Rexall, 1615 Orleans Boulevard, Orleans, ON, K1C 7E2, (613) 824-0082, https://www.rexall.ca/storelocator/store/95
Rexall, 4459 Kingston Road, Scarborough, ON, M1E 2N7, (416) 282-1978, https://www.rexall.ca/storelocator/store/109
Rexall, 250 Wincott Drive, Weston, ON, M9R 2R5, (416) 248-1735, https://www.rexall.ca/storelocator/store/0869/
Rexall, Unit A01 – 545 Steeles Avenue West, Brampton, ON, L6Y 4E7 (905) 453-1625, https://www.rexall.ca/storelocator/store/980
Rexall, 901 Eglinton Avenue West, Toronto, ON, M6C 2C1, (416) 787-1344, https://www.rexall.ca/storelocator/store/3012/
Rexall, 90 Copper Creek Drive, Markham, ON, L6B 0P2, (905) 209-7965, https://www.rexall.ca/storelocator/store/6933
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At Wednesday’s press conference, Ford said his government is continuing to press the feds to expedite Health Canada’s approval of point-of-care testing, which would allow people to see their test results in “minutes.”

Read more: Coronavirus: Education minister says Ontario to review COVID-19 symptoms list for schools

Ford said the Ontario government will announce its testing strategy on Thursday, as well as its plan to prevent and manage outbreaks — all of which is part of its fall COVID-19 preparedness plan for a potential second wave. The rest of the plan will be announced over the coming days.

On Tuesday, the Ontario government announced part one of six of its fall preparedness plan — a $70 million flu shot campaign.

Click to play video 'Coronavirus: Health Canada ‘sitting on their hands’ when it comes to testing, Ford says' Coronavirus: Health Canada ‘sitting on their hands’ when it comes to testing, Ford says
Coronavirus: Health Canada ‘sitting on their hands’ when it comes to testing, Ford says