Hours reduced at some COVID-19 testing clinics on P.E.I.

·1 min read
The COVID-19 testing clinic in Charlottetown is reducing its hours due to decreased demand. (Steve Bruce/CBC - image credit)
The COVID-19 testing clinic in Charlottetown is reducing its hours due to decreased demand. (Steve Bruce/CBC - image credit)

Health P.E.I. has reduced the operating hours at three of the province's COVID-19 testing clinics.

Starting Monday, the Borden-Carleton clinic is only open three days a week, down from seven days. The Charlottetown and Summerside clinics will now operate from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. on weekdays and 8 a.m. to 12 p.m. on weekends.

Brittany Spencer/CBC
Brittany Spencer/CBC

Clinic hours in Montague and O'Leary have not changed.

Corinne Rowswell, chief operating officer at Health P.E.I., says there's been an overall decrease in demand for testing.

"At the peak of testing with this new wave in February, March, we were seeing twice as many people as we're seeing now," said Rowswell.

Steve Bruce/CBC
Steve Bruce/CBC

The decrease, she said, is likely due to changes to the province's testing policy announced in March. More widely available antigen tests could also be a factor, Rowswell added.

The reduced hours mean some clinic staff will be able to return to their original jobs within the health care system.

"We have staffing challenges right across our system, and we just want to make sure that we're making the best use of our resources as we can," said Rowswell.

If demand surges again, she said Health P.E.I. is ready to pivot and ramp up testing.

"We monitor it on a daily basis in terms of the volumes, the peak hours, the lineups, what we're hearing from the public, watching our hospitalizations, we're watching our number of positive staff," she said.

"And so we are seeing a gradual decline in all of those indicators that would tell us that we are hopefully coming down on the other side of this wave."

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