Getting your hands on a COVID-19 rapid test is going to be a little more difficult this winter now that the tests are no longer being distributed to Ontario grocery stores and pharmacies.
Earlier this year, the province discontinued its rapid test distribution program to retail stores, leaving many to wonder where they can find a test as cold and flu season approaches.
Here is a look at where rapid tests can be found across Toronto:
The city is distributing rapid antigen tests (RATs) to all Toronto Public Library branches and the tests are free to the public.
Tests are also available downtown at Metro Hall and city hall.
Pharmacies and grocery stores:
While the province is no longer distributing tests to pharmacies and grocery stores, many locations still have tests leftover. These tests are being handed out to the public for free for as long as supplies last. Contact individual stores to inquire about rapid test availability before venturing out.
Dental and medical clinics:
Select dental clinics across Toronto have rapid tests available, including:
• 80 Bond Street (Dental Clinic)
• Bathurst-Finch Hub (Dental Clinic)
• Black Creek Community Health Centre (Dental Clinic)
• Etobicoke Civic Centre (Dental and Breastfeeding Clinics)
• Fairview Community Health Centre (Dental Clinic)
• The Hub – WestHill Hub (Dental Clinic)
• Crossways Clinic (Sexual Health Clinic)
• The Jane Street Clinic (Sexual Health Clinic)
• L.A.M.P. Community Centre (Dental Clinic)
• Rexdale C.H.C. – Rexdale Community Centre (Dental Clinic)
• Rexdale Community Health Centre Hub (Dental Clinic)
• Rexdale Community Health Centre (Dental Clinic)
• Scarborough Sexual Health Clinic
• Stonegate Community Health Centre (Dental Clinic)
• TAIBU Community Health Centre (Dental Clinic)
• Unison Health and Community Services (Dental Clinic)
• Unison Health and Community Services – Lawrence Heights Community Centre (Dental Clinic)
Community centres and malls:
• Cloverdale Mall
• East York Civic Centre
• Etobicoke Civic Centre
• North York Civic Centre
• 410 Progress Avenue, Unit D3 (near Scarborough Town Centre)
• Scarborough Civic Centre
The city has said more locations will be added to the list soon.
Self-isolate if positive:
The province says if you test positive for COVID-19, you should stay home and self-isolate until symptoms have been improving for at least 24 hours, you do not have a fever, and you have not developed additional symptoms.
For those who test positive on a rapid antigen test, you do not need a PCR or rapid molecular test to confirm your result “unless directed by a health care provider,” the province says.
PCR tests are reserved for a select group of people who are at increased risk of severe infection.
All Torontonians eligible to book updated COVID-19 shot on Wednesday
All Torontonians will be eligible to receive their updated COVID-19 vaccine an annual flu shot at the same time at fixed-site vaccination clinics, pharmacies, or with a primary health care provider starting on Oct. 31 and appointments can be booked for all groups starting on Wednesday.
Toronto Public Health’s fixed vaccination clinics can be found at Cloverdale Mall, located at 250 The East Mall, Metro Hall on Wellington Street, near John Street, in the city’s downtown core, the North York Civic Centre at 5100 Yonge Street, and 410 Progress Avenue, near the Scarborough Town Centre.