St. Clair College COVID-19 testing centre closing

·2 min read

Windsor Regional Hospital is closing the COVID-19 Assessment Centre at the St. Clair College Sportsplex at the end of this week.

The last test at the St. Clair assessment centre will take place on Friday, Oct 30, after which all scheduled tests at that location will move to the Ouellette Campus COVID-19 Assessment Centre.

WRH says it's closing the testing centre because of a reduced demand for tests. The average number of daily tests has fallen to less than half what it was since the provincial government switched testing from walk-in to appointment only — from 447 to 200, according to the WRH.

The WRH says that the Ouellette Campus Assessment Centre is capable of administering 330 tests a day, and that with current testing levels it can accomodate same day tests. With the closure, it is now the only WRH Covid assessment centre in the city.

"Our local testing capacity puts us in an enviable position to make adjustments depending on fluctuations in demand for tests," said Karen Riddell, vice-president, critical care, cardiology, stroke, trauma and clinical support services at WRH, in a press release. "We will continue to monitor our testing needs and we are ready to open the Met Campus assessment centre with short notice should the need for a second COVID-19 Assessment Centre arise."

The move comes little more than a week after the WRH said it was reducing the operating hours of the assessment centre at St. Clair College. The WRH again attributed that decision to lower testing volumes.

At that time, CBC News asked the Windsor-Essex County Health Unit in a briefing if it had concerns about the reduced amount of testing and number of people seeking a test.

Windsor-Essex medical officer of health Dr. Wajid Ahmed replied that testing guidelines are changing — particularly when it comes to whether to asymptomatic individuals should get tested.

"There has to be some consideration as to who is likely to have the disease," he said. "We have to make sure we are using all of those [testing] resources in the right way."