Sudbury health unit reminds public that testing guidelines have changed

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The province has also updated guidelines on what to do if residents are exposed to COVID-19

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As the COVID-19 Omicron variant continues to spread rapidly across the province, Public Health Sudbury & Districts reminds the public that the rules have changed yet again.

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The Ontario government has updated provincial guidelines on what to do if someone is exposed to COVID-19, tests positive for the virus, or has symptoms.

“This is in addition to the introduction of new provincial public health measures. Public Health Sudbury & Districts has updated its website, resources, local legally binding directions and class order to align with these changes,” a news release read.

“If you are exposed, develop symptoms or test positive, it’s important to know what to do next.”

The provincial government’s new guidelines on case management and contact tracing, self-isolation, eligibility for testing, and instructions for cases to notify close contacts of possible exposure to COVID-19 came into force on December 30.

Residents of the Sudbury and Manitoulin districts are encouraged to follow the province’s “simplified step-by-step” guide at www.ontario.ca/exposed.

“Specific requirements apply depending on a person’s age, their vaccination status, whether they live in the same household as the person who has symptoms or has tested positive for COVID, and if she is immunocompromised,” the health unit said in a statement.

The health unit said the province’s new public health measures, effective Jan. 3, align with local public health guidance first issued in November.

The local instructions have been revised to remove requirements that are now found in Ontario’s Stage Two Rules (Ontario Regulation 263/20) issued under the Reopening Ontario Act.

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“The remaining instruction letter retains evidence of vaccination requirements (beyond those required by Stage Two rules) from previous instructions, including the following locations with indoor premises that remain open: personal care services , facilities for sports and recreational fitness activities, photography studios and services, and companies that offer boat trips.

Anyone with questions about the COVID-19 vaccination is encouraged to speak with a health care provider “to help you make decisions to protect your community.”

Public Health call center staff are available to answer questions Monday through Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. at 705-522-9200.

“We return all calls, but sometimes call volumes are high and your patience is appreciated,” the health unit said.

Visit www.phsd.ca/COVID-19/vaccine-clinics to learn more about local walk-in or walk-in vaccination clinics.

Appointments can be booked online or by calling (705) 674-2299 between 8 a.m. and 6 p.m. Monday through Friday.

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Twitter: @SudburyStar

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