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COVID-19 testing site in Vancouver closes due to 'availability of staff'

A testing site in Vancouver has temporarily closed due to a staffing issue, says the health authority.
Covid Testing Line Up North Vancouver
Vancouver Coastal Health is temporarily closing its coronavirus testing site at the Life Sciences Centre at the UBC campus due to staff availability.

Vancouver Coastal Health (VCH) says it is temporarily closing its coronavirus testing site located at the Life Sciences Centre on the University of British Columbia (UBC) campus due to the availability of staff.

The health authority notified locals in a social media post on  Monday (Jan. 10) morning, adding that people who are eligible for testing may attend any testing site within the VCH region.

A full list of COVID-19 testing sites is available on the BC Centre for Disease Control (BCCDC) website, which includes days and hours of operation. VCH advises you to visit the website before attending a testing site. 

If you have mild symptoms and are fully vaccinated, VCH advises you to stay home and monitor your symptoms. 

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry told reporters in a press briefing on Dec. 21 that the Omicron strain poses a threat to public safety—but not everyone should visit a testing facility. 

"Right now, there are a number of respiratory viruses circulating. And [COVID-19] is one of them," she said. "If you're vaccinated [and] you have mild symptoms, self-isolation and self-monitoring and caring for yourself...are important things that you can do.

"You don't necessarily need to get a test."

Public health is using rapid antigen coronavirus tests to supplement PCR testing based on risk. People who are younger and don't have underlying risk factors, particularly if they are fully vaccinated, will most likely receive a rapid test. Find out more information with the BCCDC online.

Symptoms that require testing 

People who do not know if they were in contact with someone who has COVID-19 need to take a test if they have new or worsening symptoms.

If you have one or more of these key symptoms, seek testing as soon as possible:

  • Fever or chills
  • Cough
  • Loss of sense of smell or taste
  • Difficulty breathing

If you have two or more of the symptoms below for more than 24 hours, and they are not related to any other pre-existing conditions, seek testing. These symptoms are:

  • Sore throat
  • Loss of appetite
  • Extreme fatigue or tiredness
  • Headache
  • Body aches
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Diarrhea 

If you have only one of these symptoms, or a symptom that is not on this list and you are able to manage the symptoms at home, stay home until you feel better.

What you need to know

  • Use the B.C. COVID-19 Self-Assessment Tool to see if you need to be tested for COVID-19
  • A COVID-19 test is recommended if:
    • you had contact with someone who tested positive for COVID-19 and have any one of the symptoms below
    • you are experiencing symptoms as described below
  • If you feel unwell and are unsure about your symptoms, contact your health care provider or call 8-1-1