Ontario Premier Doug Ford said that he is having discussions with Shoppers Drug Mart to have COVID-19 testing at its store locations.
On Monday, Ford said that “We’ve been discussing this for a little while now and we’ve reached out to Shoppers Drug Mart, the CEO of Loblaws that owns Shoppers as well, and they’re being very cooperative so I might as well come out and say it.”
It would be specifically for people not showing any symptoms of the virus — asymptomatic patients.
According to a spokesperson for Loblaw, the company began offering COVID-19 tests for asymptomatic patients in Alberta about two months ago at its Shopper locations. They will have more than 230 locations in the province by September 1.
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“At this point, Ontario has not committed to using pharmacy for asymptomatic testing, but we continue to talk with the local government, and with most other provinces about how pharmacies can be part of the solution,” Catherine Thomas told Daily Hive in a written statement.
“We believe this model is effective to increase testing, particularly as students and teachers return to schools this fall.”
She added there are a number of benefits to the service, including the convenient locations and hours of pharmacies, and the separation of symptomatic and asymptomatic patients.