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Vancouver Coastal Health appears to not offer asymptomatic COVID-19 tests despite B.C. top doc’s endorsement

Fraser Health has changed its website to advise people without symptoms to be tested if they are a close contact of a confirmed case
In the May 17 coronavirus briefing, Dr. Bonnie Henry said people who are concerned they were exposed should get tested even if they don't show symptoms. 

Have you ever been in contact with someone who tested positive for COVID-19?

If you were ever instructed by health officials to stay home and monitor yourself for symptoms, you might not have been tested. 

Many British Columbians say they were refused a COVID-19 test despite expressing concerns they might have been exposed to the virus -- but B.C.'s top doctor said people should be tested if they think they have been exposed.

Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry told reporters in B.C.'s May 17 daily coronavirus briefing that people who are concerned they were exposed to the virus should get tested, despite showing no symptoms. 

At the time of that conference, Fraser Health's website stated that "If you have no symptoms, even if you are a contact of a confirmed case or a returning traveller, you do not require a test."

Since then, however, the website has been updated to reflect Henry's direction. Now, the regional health authority states that "If you are a close contact of a confirmed case, even with no symptoms, you should get tested seven days after exposure." 

"COVID-19 testing is not recommended for individuals without symptoms.‎"

In contrast, Vancouver Coastal Health's website continues to advise asymptomatic individuals not to get tested. While it states that close contacts of people who tested positive for the virus should have priority for testing, it notes that they must have symptoms.

Under the drop-down menu for "Who should not be tested for COVID-19" VCH states: "COVID-19 testing is not recommended for individuals without symptoms.‎"

On May 20, Vancouver Is Awesome reached out to VCH for clarification but it stated that the topic would be addressed in the daily briefing. After it wasn't, they were unable to provide an answer by 4 p.m. the following day (May 21).

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