It was brought to our attention that some individuals with symptoms are using the Rapid Antigen Testing to check for diagnosis rather than booking an appointment at the local Assessment Testing Centre and isolating until the results are back. The Grey Bruce Health Unit would like to remind the community, and emphasize that our recommendations are unchanged.Providing access to rapid antigen testing is a helpful tool in responding to the emergency. It is however, a screening test that needs to be used under specific circumstances.

The Rapid Antigen Test must NOT be used as a diagnostic tool for testing people with symptoms as it has a high failure rate. They are NOT reliable in confirming a positive or negative result in people with symptoms. If you have a negative rapid antigen test, it does not provide a reliable and clear indication that you do not have COVID-19, hence, the test will give FALSE reassurances. These test will not be accepted by Public Health as a clearance test to return to school, work, or to confirm and/or refute a diagnosis of COVID-19.

The inappropriate usage of these tests can give a false assurance, delayed diagnosis and an associated increase in the risk of transmission among contacts and the community in general. If you have COVID-19 symptoms or you have been identified by Public Health as a high-risk contact of a known COVID-19 case, or you have been instructed to test by Public Health for any other reason, please isolate and immediately book an appointment with the Assessment/Testing Centre closest to you.

source: media release, GBHU