Residents of the South Coast will no longer have to put up with an invasive nasal swab to get tested for COVID-19.
The BC Centre for Disease Control says the new saline “gargle test” is now available for adults across the Lower Mainland and on Vancouver Island.
The test involves swishing a saline solution in a person’s mouth for five seconds, then spitting it into a container and giving it to a public health worker.
The tests are available at test collection centres in urban areas and anywhere tests are being collected in rural areas, Vancouver Coastal Health said.
Anyone taking the test must not eat, drink, smoke or brush their teeth for an hour beforehand.
The gargle tests were initially rolled out for children in mid-September.
Health officials said they eventually planned to make the test available for everyone, but was prioritizing children due to limited resources and because the test would be more comfortable for them.
You can find out more about where to get tested for COVID-19 in the Vancouver Coastal Health region here.