TORONTO — As the number of COVID-19 cases continues to climb and more international travellers arrive from overseas, the Ontario government has implemented a new pilot program offering free and voluntary COVID-19 testing.

Announced at Toronto Pearson Airport on January 6 by Greater Toronto Airports Authority president and CEO Deborah Flint and Switch Health CEO Dilian Stoyanov, the free and voluntary COVID-19 testing will be available upon arrival to those staying within the province for 14 days.

“With over 60,000 international passengers coming into Pearson every week, we can’t take any unnecessary risks…The test will be free for eligible travellers and I encourage everyone to take the test to protect yourselves and your loved ones,” says Premier Doug Ford.

Switch Health, a health-service provider delivering testing services to the province of Ontario, will be providing in-person or virtually monitored self-swabbing tests in a designated area within the airport for those who’ve pre-registered for the testing.

“This airport testing pilot will test, trace and help isolate COVID-19 cases early and is a great step forward in protecting our borders,” says Deputy Premier and Minister of Health Christine Elliot.

International travellers are advised to continue following the mandatory 14-day quarantine period and will receive a notice from local public-health units regarding a positive test result.

In connection with the Government of Canada’s pre-departure requirement for Canadian travellers to provide negative COVID-19 test results 72 hours prior to departure, the province of Ontario will continue working with the federal government and the Public Health Agency to ensure next steps, with a modified quarantine period for those who tested negative.


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