British Columbians looking to test themselves for coronavirus now have an option to do so from the comfort of their homes.
A couple of companies are offering COVID-19 rapid antigen tests that allow the public to detect the virus at home.
The Canadian Shield, an Ontario-based personal protective equipment (PPE) company, will begin offering Rapid COVID-19 Antigen Test Kits manufactured by BTNX Inc. for sale on their website in packs of five for $49.95, which works out to $9.99 per test.
“With the rising number of COVID-19 outbreaks in schools and workplaces across the country, we recognized the need for more accessible and widespread testing,” says the company's CEO, Jeremy Hedges. “Due to regulatory issues, everyday Canadians are paying some of the highest prices in the world for rapid testing - we strongly believe that we can play a role in making that no longer the case.”
The tests are currently only available for purchase from the company's website in Ontario, Alberta, and B.C.
For those interested in purchasing Rapid COVID-19 Antigen Test kits from The Canadian Shield, customers must confirm they have reviewed the training resources to validate their ability to conduct the test.
Rapid Test & Trace Canada also sells a variety of rapid tests via online order, including the BTNX Rapid Response sold by The Canadian Shield. A package of five tests costs $79.
The company also sells the Roche SARS-CoV-2 Rapid Antigen Test and the Abbott Panbio COVID-19 Antigen Rapid Test.
Currently, the rapid tests are not available for purchase in B.C. drug stores. However, London Drugs plans to provide them in the future. In a statement, the company told Vancouver Is Awesome that it has "partnerships with BD and Abbott for at COVID-19 home tests" but that it does not "have an exact timeline on when they will be available in stores."
In Saskatchewan, London Drugs is currently selling Quantum COVID-19 home testing for travel.
Have a look at this COVID-19 antigen rapid test device video.