COVID-19 spit tests coming to N.W.T. for the 1st time

·1 min read
A laboratory worker shows a prototype of a self-test that will use saliva in a rapid COVID-19 test in a file photo. A spokesperson said 3,000 COVID-19 saliva tests have been ordered for the N.W.T. (Yves Herman/Reuters - image credit)
A laboratory worker shows a prototype of a self-test that will use saliva in a rapid COVID-19 test in a file photo. A spokesperson said 3,000 COVID-19 saliva tests have been ordered for the N.W.T. (Yves Herman/Reuters - image credit)

COVID-19 spit tests, which use saliva to detect the virus instead of a sample from the nose or throat, are making their way to the Northwest Territories.

A spokesperson for the Northwest Territories Health and Social Services Authority says 3,000 spit tests have been ordered.

They'll be available for young children, or in select circumstances for people who can't have a standard swab done, like those with a broken nose or other medical concerns.

The tests are coming from B.C.'s Provincial Health Services Authority's COVID-19 testing inventory.

No exact date has been set on when the tests will arrive, though they have been confirmed to have been shipped, the spokesperson said.

The tests don't have an expiration date either, prior to use, the spokesperson said. The territory couldn't immediately say how long it takes to get the results from a spit test.

It will be the first time the spit tests are used in the N.W.T.

The plan is to have them ready for use prior to the start of upcoming school year.

Last school year, in the wake of a Yellowknife COVID-19 outbreak that started at a school, several families went public with frustrations with the public health policies that required children to undergo multiple rounds of invasive testing or be confined to their property.

There are currently no active COVID-19 cases in the territory.

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