Fraser Health is partnering with Engaged Communities Canada Society to make rapid test kits available to people living in areas of the Fraser Health region with the highest rates of COVID-19 transmission.
This is a pilot project, with Engaged Communities Canada Society leading distribution of kits in limited quantities to people in hot spot communities.
COVID-19 rapid tests are an early detection method for COVID-19 that can help stop the spread of the virus in your community. It’s also free, quick and easy to self-administer. Rapid tests catch people when they’re the most infectious even if they are asymptomatic or demonstrate mild symptoms.
At-home COVID-19 rapid test kits are available in limited quantities to people in areas in the Fraser Health region with relatively lower rates of vaccination and the highest rates of COVID-19 transmission.
In order to be eligible for a kit, you must be a resident of Abbotsford, Mission, Chilliwack, Agassiz-Harrison or Hope (communities currently experiencing highest transmission rates in the Fraser Health region).
Kits are intended for people who are not fully vaccinated or are not currently eligible for vaccination (for example, children under 12 years), particularly those who may be at higher risk of exposure to COVID-19 with limited mechanisms to protect themselves and access testing.
The kits are for personal use only. They are not intended to be used in the workplace or for travel purposes.
Clients will need to show proof of residence in a hotspot community and provide their name and phone number for follow-up.
Community rapid test deployment is not school-based; however, students who meet the criteria above may be accessing kits because they live in a community with high COVID-19 transmission.
Kits are available on a first-come, first serve basis with distribution organized by Engaged Communities Canada Society. For more information on kit distribution, contact Engaged Communities Canada Society.
How and when to use rapid tests
- The rapid test is easy to use. A swab is gathered from the front of the nose, mixed with a developing liquid and drops of this mixture are squeezed onto a testing device.
- People who meet the eligibility criteria are encouraged to test themselves every three to four days. With rapid tests, you can get results quickly, within 15 minutes.
- If you get a positive result, it’s important to go for polymerase chain reaction (PCR) testing at a COVID-19 testing centre to confirm your result, which initiates public health follow up.
- People should self-isolate while awaiting test results.
- Those with symptoms or who have had a high-risk exposure to COVID-19 are still required to get a PCR test as these tests are more sensitive to identifying people infected.
- Self-administered rapid tests for COVID-19 do not replace other forms of testing, including rapid testing already occurring in some workplaces and other locations where there are known clusters or outbreaks.