COVID-19: Criteria for Laboratory Testing Addendum

Posted Monday March 16, 2020

Posted By: Jeffery Satchwill

Category: General

To: Ottawa Physicians, Nurse Practitioners, Walk-In Clinics, Travel Clinics, Community Health Centres, Emergency Departments, Infection Control, HEPCO, Pharmacists, Midwives; Long-Term Care Homes; Retirement Homes
From: Dr. Monir Taha, Associate Medical Officer of Health, Ottawa Public Health (OPH)
Date: March 16, 2019

Dear Colleagues,

For COVID-19 information, see OPH’s Physician and Health Care Professionals Coronavirus website or call 613-580-6744

We are writing to clarify the criteria for lab testing recommendations of the ERMS dated March 15, 2020. The guidance and information in the March 15, 2020 ERMS remains in effect; this includes updates on social distancing, new online-reporting tool, personal protective equipment, assessing patients, instructions for patients, and Brewer Arena COVID-19 Assessment Centre.

Addendum to 6. Criteria for Laboratory Testing

OPH also recommends COVID-19 testing of the following individuals, regardless of exposure or travel history:

  • Health care workers with acute respiratory illness, including mild illness
  • Individuals admitted to hospital with acute respiratory illness
  • Individuals with acute respiratory illness who reside in long-term care homes and retirement homes
  • Individuals with acute respiratory illness who reside in other institutions as directed by OPH
  • Health care workers as part of a health care institutional outbreaks and as directed by OPH
  • First Nation Community members living on-reserve with acute respiratory illness

The above list had not been included in the March 15, 2020 ERMS; the other recommendations on 6. Criteria for Laboratory Testing are unchanged. As of March 16, 2020 at 10:30a.m. there have been 13 cases of COVID-19 reported in Ottawa. OPH continues to reach out directly to identified close contacts.

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