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Northern Health broadens COVID-19 testing strategy

Northern Health now has the capacity to broaden its testing strategy, according to Acting Chief Medical Health Officer Dr. Raina Fumerton.

Any British Columbian who is experiencing cold, flu or COVID like symptoms can be assessed to get a test.

When COVID-19 was first seen across the province the health authority had to be focused on who was tested due to accommodations for storage capacity in labs, she said during the Northern Health COVID-19 virtual town hall Wednesday evening.

Dr. Fumerton said health care providers can order COVID-19 tests based on their clinical judgment.

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“In some cases, a physician or nurse practitioner may decide a person can be advantaged at home and does not need to be tested and there’s some clinical judgment in all of this but certainly testing is available for those who need it and of course not everyone requires a test,” she said.

According to Fumerton, in the North, there have been 2,687 COVID tests conducted.

She also said Northern Health is on par with other health authorities from the number of tests is proportionate to positive cases.

“As we continue to expand testing I think we will stay in proportionate numbers to the other health authorities to ensure that we also have an accurate reflection on what the situation is here in our communities,” she said.

She added the health authority has been working hard over the last week to implement strategies to expand the testing in the North.

The Northern Health region has had 40 positive cases with 32 of them considered recovered.

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