COVID-19 Testing Information

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An illustration of two people wearing masks. On their left is written who can currently get the COVID-19? Vaccine? A button containing the word learn more.

 Last revised - February 24, 2021

When should I go for testing?

There are five reasons to seek testing for COVID-19:

1. You are showing a COVID-19 symptom. 

 Click here to learn about the symptoms of COVID-19

If you have COVID-19 symptoms, please continue to self-isolate, follow the self-isolation instructions, and do not leave your place of isolation unless it is to go for testing or to seek medical care.

Type Symptoms
Classic symptoms feeling feverish, new or worsening cough and/or difficulty breathing.
Other symptoms

sore throat, difficulty swallowing, new olfactory (smell) or taste disorder(s), nausea/vomiting, diarrhea, abdominal pain, pneumonia, runny nose*, or nasal congestion.*


*In the absence of underlying reason for these symptoms such as seasonal allergies and post-nasal drip.
Less common symptoms unexplained fatigue/malaise (feeling ill) /myalgias (muscle aches), delirium (acutely altered mental status and inattention), unexplained or increased number of falls, acute functional decline, exacerbation of chronic conditions, chills, headaches, conjunctivitis (red, inflamed eyes), croup (barking cough), or multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children (some of the symptoms associated with multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children include persistent fever, abdominal pain, gastrointestinal symptoms, including nausea, vomiting and diarrhea, as well as rash); an infected infant could also have trouble feeding.
Asymptomatic No signs or symptoms of COVID-19.


2. You have been exposed to a confirmed case of the virus, as informed by Ottawa Public Health or exposure notification through the COVID Alert app. It is recommended you (and/or the members of your household) get tested NO SOONER than 7 days after you last came into contact with someone who tested positive for COVID-19.


3. You are a resident or work in a setting that has a COVID-19 outbreak, as identified and informed by Ottawa Public Health. 


4. You are eligible for testing as part of a targeted testing initiative directed by the Ministry of Health or the Ministry of Long-Term Care. 


5. You have traveled to the UK, or have come into contact with someone who recently traveled to the UK, please go get tested immediately (even if asymptomatic).

Click here to learn more about COVID-19 testing for the purpose of pre-travel clearance.

New: Traveler screening for COVID-19 before an international flight: Available at the Ray Friel and Heron Clinics

Learn more about this service on this website.

Following new testing guidance from the Ministry of Health, Ottawa’s assessment centres will no longer provide free testing for the purpose of pre-travel clearance. This guidance applies to all assessment centres in the province and came into effect Friday, December 11, 2020.

COVID-19 tests for the purpose of international travel clearance are not recommended by Ontario’s public health experts. Travellers should consult their travel carrier’s guidelines to ensure they have the most up-to-date information about requirements. Travellers should also refer to the federal government’s travel website for up-to-date expectations and requirements related to their destination. If a COVID-19 test is required, it is important to ensure ample time for testing and to receive results.

COVID-19 testing services are available by private laboratory providers for a fee, and travellers in need of a test are encouraged to search for convenient local options.

The Taskforce and its partners recognize the impact of this new guidance. To keep our communities safe, Ottawa’s assessment centres and testing sites follow all guidelines mandated by the provincial government and public health experts.

For more information, visit the Ottawa COVID-19 Testing Taskforce website.

Where to get tested in Ottawa:

Please only book one appointment at a single site and cancel your appointment if you plan on no longer attending.

COVID-19 CHEO Assessment Centre and Kids Come First Care Clinic at Brewer Park Arena

  • Ages: 
    • For testing at the COVID-19 CHEO Assessment Centre, ages 2 months to 18 years
    • For care at the COVID-19 CHEO Kids Come First Care Clinic, ages 6 months to 18 years (infants less than 6 months of age must visit the CHEO Emergency Department)
  • Hours:
    • Monday to Thursday: 8:30 am to 7:30 pm
    • Friday to Sunday: 8:30 am to 3:30 pm

View other locations

COVID-19 Care and Testing Centres- Heron, Moodie and Ray Friel locations

View other locations

COVID-19 Assessment Centre for Adults at Brewer Park Arena

  • Ages: Anyone 18+ years old
  • Hours: 
    • Monday to Thursday: 8:30 am to 7:30 pm
    • Friday to Sunday: 8:30 am to 3:30 pm

View other locations

COVID-19 Drive-Thru Assessment Centre at City Hall/National Arts Centre

  • Ages:  14+ years old
  • Hours: Seven days a week, 10 am to 6 pm
  • Services provided: By appointment only, drive-thru testing only with a valid Canadian health card (as of February 8, 2021) 
  • Location: 

**Please note** Patients must register at City Hall Parking Garage before being tested at the National Arts Centre Parking Garage. Please arrive at City Hall Parking Garage, Elgin St. Entrance at your appointment time.

View other locations


COVID-19 testing at three of the Ottawa Community Health Centres

  • Ages:  Testing adults and children above 6 months of age at Centretown and Sandy Hill sites. Testing adults and children aged 13 years and above at the Somerset West site. 
  • Services provided: By appointment only, testing available for those living in Ontario without a health card
  • Download factsheet: Important information about COVID-19 testing at three of the Ottawa Community Health Centres
  • Locations:
    • Centretown Community Health Centre: 
      • Location: 420 Cooper St., Ottawa (Entrance off Somerset Street West, next to 395 Somerset and across the street from the Wine Rack)  
      • Hours: 9:00 am to 4:00 pm, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday
      • Click here to book an appointment or call 343-553-2661
        • Please note telephone booking is reserved for those who do NOT have internet access. It is NOT an information line.
    • Sandy Hill Community Health Centre: 
    • Somerset West Community Health Centre:
      • Location:  55 Eccles St., Ottawa 
      • Hours: 
        • 9:00 am to 4:00 pm, Monday to Wednesday.
        • 1:00 pm to 4:00 pm on Thursday. 
        • 9:00 am to 2:30 pm on Friday
      • Click here to book an appointment or call 613-327-8145

View other locations

COVID-19 Pop-Up Testing Site at the AMA Community Centre

  • Ages: Anyone over 2 months old
  • Hours: Tuesdays and Thursdays, 8:00 am to 12:00 pm
  • Service provided: Scheduled appointments and very limited walk-up testing
  • Location: AMA Community Centre, 1216 Hunt Club Road, Ottawa
  • Download factsheet: Important information about COVID-19 testing at the AMA Community Centre
  • Book an appointment by calling 613-737-8193
    • To cancel your appointment, please call 613-737-8193

View other locations

COVID-19 Pop-Up Testing Site at Vanier Community Service Centre

  • Ages: Six months and older
  • Hours: Tuesdays and Thursdays, open 11:30 am to 6 pm

View other locations


COVID-19 testing at Ontario pharmacies

If you are not showing symptoms, you can currently make an appointment at a select pharmacy. This is an interim measure. Please visit the province's website to ensure you have current information about testing options and locations available to you.

The Ontario government announced that free COVID-19 testing will be available at select pharmacies throughout the province. Learn more about pharmacy testing.

Testing for specific populations


Note: For Inuit wishing to access COVID-19 assessment and testing, please contact Akausivik Inuit Family Health Team for an appointment. Services offered in Inuktitut and English.

Akausivik Inuit Family Health Team (AIFHT)  
24 Selkirk Street, Suite 300
Telephone: 613-740-0999 
Open 9 am to 5 pm, Monday to Friday

Ottawa’s Daily Testing Update

What to do after getting tested for COVID-19

Access COVID-19 test results


COVID-19 Update

Contact Information

Ottawa Public Health COVID-19 telephone line

  • Monday to Friday, from 7:30 am to 6:00 pm
  • Weekends, from 9:00 am to 4:00 pm
  • Translation is available in multiple languages
  • Telephone: 613-580-6744 follow the prompts to the COVID-19 telephone line
  • TTY: 613-580-9656

Emergency Services

  • 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 or a COVID-19 Care clinic. Go to the nearest Emergency Department or call 9-1-1.

See someone not respecting COVID-19 rules?

How to access help during COVID-19

  • 211 Ontario can help you find financial and social support during COVID-19
  • Telephone: 2-1-1

Related Information




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