The Eastern Ontario Health Unit (EOHU), in partnership with the Cornwall Community Hospital (CCH), is opening a COVID-19 testing centre in Cornwall this week. The Community Addiction and Mental Health Centre, located immediately north of CCH at 850 McConnell Avenue in Cornwall will be the temporary testing centre location. The centre will be opening on April 2nd with appointment-only access. Please call the centre between 8:30 a.m. and 3:30 p.m., Monday through Friday, to book your appointment at 613-935-7762.
The aim of the testing centre is to provide access to COVID-19 testing for EOHU area residents, while reducing the strain on 911, EMS, primary care and hospital emergency rooms so that they can focus on urgent care. “We’re hoping that opening the testing centre will also reduce the risk of spreading the virus in hospitals and doctors’ offices, protecting healthcare workers and other patients from COVID-19 infection,” says Dr. Paul Roumeliotis, Medical Officer of Health.
Testing centre limited to people with moderate, worsening (but non-severe) symptoms
The EOHU stresses that not everyone who is concerned that they may have COVID-19 should call the testing centre. Only people who have worsening, but not severe, COVID-19 symptoms (such as fever and worsening cough) should call for an appointment. Not everyone that calls will be eligible for an appointment to be tested; the decision to test will be based on the most current Ministry of Health case definition guidelines: http://www.health.gov.on.ca/en/pro/programs/publichealth/coronavirus/docs/2019_testing_clearing_cases_guidance.pdf
Those with mild symptoms that can be managed at home should not call the centre as they will not be tested. Individuals with mild symptoms should self-isolate at home for 14 days from the onset of symptoms and notify those that they may have been in contact with 2 days prior to having symptoms. People who have symptoms and are age 70 or over, or who have chronic medical conditions or compromised immune systems should call the EOHU at 613-933-1375 or 1-800-267-7120. Anyone experiencing severe symptoms such as difficulty breathing should call 911 or go to the hospital emergency room.
“Unique to the Cornwall COVID-19 testing centre, people arriving for testing will be greeted by a Mental Health and Addiction Counsellor. We recognize that many in our community are feeling anxiety and stress during this particularly difficult time; we are hopeful that this support will help,” explains Jeanette Despatie, President and CEO of Cornwall Community Hospital.
Additional testing centres may also open in the region. The EOHU will notify the public when these centres become available.
For more information on the Cornwall COVID-19 testing centre, or on COVID-19 in general, visit www.eohu.ca/coronavirus.