South Georgian Bay
COVID-19 Information and Testing
COVID-19 Community Risk Level
The purpose of the COVID-19 Community Risk Level is to help you determine the best ways to protect yourself and others from COVID-19 infection and serious illness. The risk of infection and severe illness, along with the risk of developing Long COVID or Post COVID-19 Syndrome, increases as community, personal and situational risk increases. As risks increase, add more layers of protection. The more precautions you take, the better you and others around you will be protected.
COVID-19 Testing for Travel
COVID-19 Patient Resources
New Patient Resources at ConfusedAboutCOVID.ca
The Department of Community and Family Medicine (DFCM) at the University of Toronto and the Ontario College of Family Physicians (OCFP) have created a new series of patient resources that teams can use to help patients make sense of the latest guidance around COVID/Omicron.
The resources include plain-language questions and answers about COVID management, testing, isolation and more. They offer patients and the public trustworthy advice about protecting their health and how primary care providers can help. Find out more at ConfusedAboutCovid.ca or access them individually here:
- I’m not feeling well. How do I know if I have COVID? What should I do?
- I think I have COVID. When should I call my doctor?
- Do I need a COVID PCR test?
- When should I use a Rapid Antigen Test?
- I’ve been in close contact with someone who has COVID. What should I do?
- I’m worried about the new variant. How do I keep safe during Omicron?
COVID-19 Fact Sheet: Symptoms, Testing & Isolation Requirements
Symptoms and Testing
If you have any symptoms of COVID-19 you should assume that you may have the virus and are contagious.
- Fever or chills, cough, shortness of breath, decreased or loss of taste or smell, or two or more of the following:
- Runny nose or nasal congestion
- Extreme fatigue
- Sore throat
- Muscle aches or joint pain
- Gastrointestinal symptoms such as vomiting or diarrhea
Not sure if you need a test?
If you have questions about whether you or your child should visit or attend school or get a COVID-19 Assessment please use the Simcoe Muskoka District Health Unit (SMDHU) tool:
COVID-19 Clinical Assessments and Testing
In response to highly transmissible variants, Ontario has updated its testing guidelines to ensure those at higher risk of severe illness or living and working in the highest risk settings have access to timely testing, protecting the most vulnerable and helping to keep critical services running.
There are two main publicly-funded tests available in Ontario to those who are eligible: rapid antigen tests and molecular tests, which include both polymerase chain reaction (PCR) and rapid molecular testing. At this time, PCR testing is only available for high risk groups.
Antiviral treatments are now available for people with symptoms and a positive test result (PCR or rapid antigen test) who are at higher risk of severe COVID-19. These treatments must be taken immediately within the first five to seven days (depending on the treatment) of symptom onset.
Find out more about antiviral treatment options or talk to your health care provider.
Protecting Ourselves from COVID-19
Click HERE to read the COVID-19 Vaccine Information Sheet
We all must do our part to follow the public health guidelines and practice:
PRACTICING THE 3 W’S
Wear a mask
Watch your distance
Wash your hands
AND AVOID THE 3 C’S
Closed spaces, especially with poor ventilation
Close contact settings
Close Contact, Gatherings and Events (Public Health Guidelines)
- Limit close contact to your household only (the people you live with).
- Maintain two metres of physical distancing from everyone else.
- Do not visit any other household or allow visitors to your home.
- Individuals who live alone, including seniors, may consider having exclusive, close contact with another household to help reduce the negative impacts of social isolation.
Everyone should avoid social gatherings.
- Virtual gatherings or events are the safest way to visit or recognize occasions with people outside your household.
- Trips outside of the home should only be for essential reasons (work, school, groceries/pharmacy, health care, assisting vulnerable individuals, or exercise and physical activity).
- Wear a face covering in indoor public spaces, outdoors if physical distancing cannot be maintained, or if wearing one is required.
- Staying home is the best way to protect yourself and others.
- Individuals and families in higher transmission areas should avoid travel to lower transmission areas (i.e. from Red to Orange, from Yellow to Green) except for essential reasons.
- Individuals living away from home, including those studying at colleges and universities, should consider doing a self-quarantine, or drastically reducing close contact with others 10 to 14 days before returning home for the holidays. This will help lower the risk of exposure to COVID-19.
- Stay home if you have symptoms, even if they are mild.
- Wash your hands thoroughly and regularly.
- Cover your cough.
- Download the COVID Alert mobile app.
- Get tested if you have symptoms compatible with COVID-19 or if you’ve been advised of exposure by the health unit or through the COVID Alert mobile app.
COVID testing for travel
- The Ontario government, in consultation with the Chief Medical Officer of Health, has announced COVID-19 testing for outbound international travelers will no longer be funded by the province.
- The province recommends travelers consult the guidelines of their airline and country of destination and if a test is required, seek the test through a private testing facility or travel clinic. Participating Shoppers Drug Mart and Lifelabs locations are available online or ww.lifelabs.com/flyclear/
COVID-19, Cold and Flu Care Clinic
The SGB OHT wants to thank all community members, physicians and nurse practitioners for coming together to operate the South Georgian Bay COVID-19, Cold and Flu Care Clinic. Through this clinic, we were able to support many patients in our community and keep them out of the emergency room. As we continue to recover from COVID-19 in the community, the demand for this clinic has diminished and therefore we will be pausing operations. However, we are prepared and ready to begin to offer this service in the future.
If you have concerns about your health, please contact your primary care provider or visit the After Hours Clinic by booking here
Antiviral treatments are now available for free by prescription to people with COVID-19 who are at higher risk of progressing to severe disease requiring hospitalization.
Learn about COVID-19 antiviral treatments, who is eligible and how to get treatment.
On behalf of the South Georgian Bay OHT healthcare workers, we are asking our community to come together to take the necessary precautions to protect our community and to prevent the spread of COVID-19 by adhering to Public Health’s safety measures. We know this is a difficult time for many people, but we need more than ever to stay local, avoid all non-essential travel and only see people in our household. This is a critical component of reducing COVID-19 transmission in our community.