COVID-19 Assessment Centre and Care Clinics

Last revised - April 6, 2020

COVID-19 Assessment Centre

The first COVID-19 Assessment Centre is now open. The COVID-19 Assessment Centre is an out-of-hospital clinic where people will be assessed by a health-care provider and tested for COVID-19 if required. It is operated by The Ottawa Hospital (TOH) and CHEO, in partnership with Ottawa Public Health (OPH) and the City of Ottawa.

You should come to the Assessment Centre, not the Emergency Department, if:

  • You have a new or worsening cough and/or fever, and
  • In the past 14 days have either travelled outside of Canada or been in contact with someone who has been diagnosed with COVID-19.

Patients who meet the criteria above will be tested for COVID-19, which involves taking a sample from the throat or nose with a swab.

Important: You do NOT need to contact Ottawa Public Health before going to an assessment centre.

Location and hours:

Brewer Park Arena
151 Brewer Way
Accessed from Bronson Avenue opposite Carleton University
Open 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. daily

 Frequently asked questions about the assessment centre

Where is the COVID-19 Assessment Centre? 
  • The COVID-19 Assessment Centre is located at the Brewer Park Arena at 151 Brewer Way, accessed from Bronson Avenue opposite Carleton University. Follow signage for parking.
When should I go to the COVID-19 Assessment Centre?
You should come to the COVID-19 Assessment Centre, not the Emergency Department, if:
  • You have a new or worsening cough and/or fever, and
  • In the past 14 days have either travelled outside of Canada or been in contact with someone who has been diagnosed with COVID-19.
When is the COVID-19 Assessment Centre open?
  • The COVID-19 Assessment Centre is open 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. daily. If you are symptomatic after the Centre is closed and you do not need emergency care, please continue to self-isolate and wait to go to the Centre the next morning.
  • If you need emergency care at any time, please go to your nearest emergency department or call 9-1-1. 
Does everyone returning from international travel (including the United States of America) need to visit the COVID-19 Assessment Centre?
  • No. You should only visit the Assessment Centre if you have a fever and/or a new or worsening cough and have travelled within the past 14 days. Otherwise, please continue to check and follow updated guidance on OttawaPublicHealth.ca/Coronavirus
If my symptoms are serious, should I still go to the COVID-19 Assessment Centre?
  • No. If you are in distress (e.g. significant trouble breathing, chest pain, fainting, or have a significant worsening of any chronic disease symptoms), do not go to the Assessment Centre. Go to the nearest Emergency Department or call 9-1-1.
Do I need to call Ottawa Public Health or call the COVID-19 Assessment Centre before coming in?
 No, you do not need to call ahead. You can come directly to the Assessment Centre if:
  • You have a new or worsening cough and/or fever AND
  • Have returned from travel or been in contact with someone who has been diagnosed with COVID-19 in the past 14 days.
  • If you are a health-care provider who needs to report a possible case of COVID-19, or who has questions about clinical practice, please call Ottawa Public Health at 613-580-6744 or visit Ottawa Public Health’s COVID-19 webpage for Health Care Providers.
Can I come to the COVID-19 Assessment Centre if I am not a resident of Ontario?
  • Please follow instructions from your local health authority. Other regional health authorities outside of Ottawa are working on screening and assessment strategies.
How should I travel to the Assessment Centre?
  • Individuals should be taking their own personal vehicles to the assessment centre with no unnecessary passengers. If this is not possible, they should be taking a method of transport that minimizes their exposure to other people such as a taxi or rideshare. They should be sitting in the rear seat passenger side, wear a mask, ensure the window is down and take note of the transportation information (e.g.: taxi number, date & time). 
What do I need to bring with me if I go to the COVID-19 Assessment Centre ?
  • Please bring your Ontario health card, a list of your current medications, and anything else that you might need while you wait to be assessed. Wait times will depend patient volume but may be several hours.
Can my child be assessed at the COVID-19 Assessment Centre ?
  • Yes. The COVID-19 Assessment Centre will have pediatric health-care providers from CHEO who can assess and test both children older than six months and adults. Do not bring your child if they are well and do not need to be screened.
  • Important: Children under six months should go to the Children’s Hospital of Eastern Ontario.
Should I come to the COVID-19 Assessment Centre if I am an older adult or if I have a suppressed immune system?
  •  Yes. Everyone will sanitize their hands and put on a mask immediately on arriving at the Centre.
What is the COVID-19 Assessment Centre process?
  • When you arrive at the Assessment Centre, you will be screened for travel and contact history and symptoms upon arrival.
  • If you are symptomatic, and have either have returned from travel, or been in contact with someone who has been diagnosed with COVID-19 in the past 14 days, you will be assessed by a health care provider and tested for COVID-19 if required.
  • The test involves taking a sample from the back of the nasal cavity with a swab.
  • Your health-care provider and Ottawa Public Health will follow up with those who test positive with results and further instruction will be provided.
How will the COVID-19 Assessment Centre keep patients safe?
  • Areas for screening and assessment will be kept separate to reduce the risk of spreading infection.
  • Everyone will be asked to sanitize their hands and put on a mask at the Centre entrance.
  • Please also be mindful to avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth unless you have just cleaned your hands.
If I was tested, how long does it take to get results?

It usually takes approximately 7 days to receive test results for COVID-19.

On April 3, 2020, the Ontario Government launched a new online portal to access COVID-19 test results. This portal will offer fast and secure access to test results on your computer and mobile device. You can find the tool by visiting Government of Ontario’s new user-friendly online portal.

Please continue to self-isolate while awaiting test results. 

Will my results be confidential?
  • Yes. Your personal health information is protected under Ontario’s Personal Health Information Protection Act (PHIPA).
  • The following information will be reported on The Ministry of Health of Ontario’s website:
    • Patient age and gender
    • Public Health Unit
    • Hospital involved
    • Type of transmission
    • Status (eg. Home isolation)
I am a primary care physician, should I direct patients to the COVID-19 Assessment Centre ?
  • Yes. If you have a patient who meets the criteria for attending the COVID-19 Assessment Centre (new or worsening cough and/or fever, recent travel history, contact with someone diagnosed with COVID-19), and you are unable to assess or test them in your clinic, please direct that patient to the Assessment Centre.

COVID-19 Care Clinics

The COVID-19 Care Clinics are out-of-hospital clinics where people will be assessed by a healthcare provider and treated for respiratory illness, if required. 

Ottawa Public Health has partnered with Queensway Carleton Hospital to open a COVID-19 Care Clinic in the West End.  The clinic involves the City of Ottawa, CHEO, primary care physicians, community pediatricians and the regional COVID-19 planning team.  They will be equipped to do basic diagnostic tests, such as chest X-rays and lab tests. It opens April 6th.   

You should come to the COVID-19 Care Clinics if:

  • You have escalating symptoms of respiratory illness, including a fever or worsening cough and flu-like symptoms, and
  • Are in need of medical attention

Please note that the Brewer Arena Assessment Center is the primary location for swabbing to test for COVID-19. You should review the criteria for testing on the Ottawa Public Health website, as they will change over time.

The Care Clinic will help people get treatment they require for respiratory illness, while helping keep Emergency Departments for emergencies.

If you are in distress (e.g. significant trouble breathing, chest pain, fainting, or have a significant worsening of any chronic disease symptoms), go to the nearest Emergency Department.

Location and hours:

COVID-19 Care Clinic – Ottawa West
595 Moodie Drive
Monday to Friday, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Frequently asked questions about the COVID-19 care clinics

Who can go to the COVID-19 Care Clinic?
Anyone in need of medical care for escalating symptoms of respiratory illness – cough, fever and cold-like symptoms. This includes children 2 years and over.

Who should NOT go to the COVID-19 Care Clinic?

People with mild symptoms should self-isolate at home until 24 hours after their symptoms disappear. 

People who are in distress (e.g. significant trouble breathing, chest pain, fainting, or have a significant worsening of any chronic disease symptoms) should go to the nearest Emergency Department.

If my symptoms are serious, do I still go to the Care Clinic?
No. If you are in distress (e.g. significant trouble breathing, chest pain, fainting, or have a significant worsening of any chronic disease symptoms), go to the nearest Emergency Department.
Are the clinics accessible to people in wheelchairs?
The COVID-19 Care Clinic – Ottawa West is wheelchair accessible.
Do I need to be referred by Public Health or a Physician? Do I need an appointment?
No, you do not.  However, if you have a Family Physician, please contact them first.  If you are in need of urgent care, please go directly to the nearest Emergency Department.
Can I come to the clinic if I’m not from Ontario? 
Please follow instructions from your local health authority. Other regional health authorities outside of Ottawa are working on screening and treatment strategies. 
What do I need to bring with me?
Please bring your health card, a list of your current medications, and anything else that you might need while you wait to be assessed. Wait times will depend on patient volume and may be several hours.
Do I need to pay for the visit?
 here is no cost to you.  Please bring evidence of your health coverage, such as your OHIP card.
How can I get there?
The best way is to take your own transportation, if possible. If that isn’t possible, you can also take a taxi/Uber.  Please be sure to sit in the back seat, wear a mask, and keep the window open. Please follow all parking instructions on site.
How many people can be seen in a day?
We are planning to see approximately 80 patients per day initially, and the clinic can ramp up over time. 
What will happen when I get there?
You will likely have to wait in a line.  Please be sure to stand 2 meters (6 feet) away from the person in front of you, and cough into your sleeve, if needed.  Once inside, everyone will be asked to sanitize their hands and put on a mask at the entrance.  You will be assessed by a nurse initially, and then have a seat in a waiting area.  When it is your turn, a doctor and nurse will assess your condition and either provide treatment or recommend treatments at home.  Some patients may be given an x-ray or other basic diagnostic tests.  More advanced testing would require a hospital visit.
Do you treat children?
Yes. However, children under the age of two years should be taken to CHEO.
Should I come in if I am older or have a suppressed immune system?
If you meet the criteria for treatment at the COVID-19 Care Clinic noted above, you should come to the clinic. Everyone will sanitize their hands and put on a mask immediately on arriving at the Clinic. 
How do you keep people safe?
Areas for assessment and treatment will be kept separate to reduce the risk of spreading infection. We will be following the same cleaning protocols as hospitals.  Everyone will be asked to sanitize their hands and put on a mask at the entrance.  Chairs in waiting areas will be appropriately separated.  Please also be mindful to avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth unless you have just cleaned your hands.  Please be sure to keep two meters (6 feet) distance between you and other people, and to cough/sneeze into your sleeve.

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