Niagara Health says it's working to accomodate an increasing demand for COVID-19 testing.
In a news release, the organization said there has been a “significant increase in the number of people seeking testing over the past week at Niagara Health’s three COVID-19 assessment centres, with 3,484 tests performed between Sept. 11 to 17.”
That's an average of nearly 500 people per day, including a record of 665 tests on Sept. 16.
Niagara Health says walk-in patients are experiencing longer than normal wait times with the increase in the number of patients going to assessment centres, and advises that “with large numbers of patients arriving for testing, it may not be possible to see all walk-in patients on the day they arrive.”
Assessment centre staff are working to contact everyone who has called to request an appointment for testing, the organization said.
“Our teams are working diligently to accommodate the increased demand for testing and we ask for everyone’s patience during this time,” said Derek McNally, executive vice president of clinical services, in the release.
“While testing is an important safety measure, we really encourage everyone to practice the public safety measures that were so effective in blunting the impact of the first wave of the pandemic. Please continue physical distancing, cleaning your hands regularly and wearing a mask when appropriate.”
Anyone can access testing at any one of Niagara Health’s three Assessment Centres, located in St. Catharines, Welland and Niagara Falls. The centres in St. Catharines and Niagara Falls are open seven days a week. The centre in Welland is open on Monday, Wednesday and Friday each week.
Full details on locations and hours of operations can be found here.