Rapid Antigen Testing (updated March 22, 2021)

  • Rapid testing is not a Copernicus Lodge or Unity Health Toronto change – this is a public health measure mandated by the Ministry that we must comply with.
  • The Ministry Directives and Guidance stipulate a minimum standard for the homes and each home has the discretion of whether they will increase the tests and requirements, but they cannot reduce them.
  • Essential care providers (ECPs), as well as Copernicus and Agency staff, and physicians have transitioned to rapid antigen tests nasal swabs that are required to be done based on which Zone we are in in the Provincial re-opening framework


How often will Essential Care Providers be tested?

  • When in the yellow/orange/red or grey zones in Ontario’s framework, antigen testing is required 2-3 times, on non-consecutive days, in a 7-day period.
  • You will be tested on every other day that you come, to a maximum of 3 times.
  • If you visit only twice in a week on consecutive days, you would be swabbed once and the second day would not require a swab.
  • If you visit once per week, you will be swabbed each time you arrive.

How often will staff and physicians be tested?

  • For staff (agency and Copernicus), physicians, students and volunteers who have not provided evidence of a positive COVID-19 test results within the past 90 days
    • If in Grey, red, orange or yellow zones of the Ontario Framework, 2-3 tests per week are required, on non-consecutive days
  • If you work 2 days in a row, you do not require a test on the second day.
  • If you work only one or two shifts per week
    • You are required to be tested on each entry to Copernicus Lodge

Additional details for essential care providers

  • You will still be required to complete entrance screening upon entry to the home, following which our Rapid Test Clinic registration clerk will review our database and confirm whether you need a test on that day or whether you can go directly to the floor
  • If you do require a test (i.e. your last test was 2 days prior), you are required to wait for a negative result prior to having contact with the residents. This will require a 15 minute wait after your test in a designated waiting area for Essential Care Providers.
  • If you test “presumptive positive” in your rapid test, you will be advised that you are unable to visit today and a nurse will be called to the waiting area to do a PCR NP swab to send to the lab to confirm whether you have COVID-19. You will be asked to fill out your information on the requisition form so that the lab can send us and your family physician a copy of the results. Please ensure that you bring your health card with you on each visit to the home, in case you do require the lab based test.
  • You should come 30 minutes earlier than the time you need to be on the floor, to allow for screening and testing to take place.
  • Currently, other than for confirmation of a presumptive positive test result, you no longer require an NP swab test at a community clinic. This may change at any time, so please understand that as Ministry guidance changes, so will our processes and requirements for testing.
Local Health Integration Network