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Eligibility Criteria for COVID-19 PCR Testing in Ontario


African Doctor Testing Asian Patient For Coronavirus Sitting In Clinic

Purpose: PCR Testing Eligibility Updated Criteria April 11th 2022
Molecular testing is primarily used for diagnostic purposes. Priority groups eligible for molecular (PCR) testing are listed below.
Symptomatic people who fall into one of the following groups:

  • People aged 70 years and older
  • People aged 60 years and older who have less than three doses of COVID-19 vaccine
  • People who are immunocompromised
  • Adults aged 18 years and older who have had less than three doses of COVID-19 vaccine and have
    risk conditions:

    • obesity (BMI ≥ 30kg/m2)
    • diabetes
    • heart disease, hypertension, congestive heart failure
    • chronic respiratory disease, including cystic fibrosis
    • cerebral palsy
    • intellectual disability
    • sickle cell disease
    • moderate or severe kidney disease (eGFR <60mL/min)
    • moderate or severe liver disease (e.g., Child Pugh Class B or Ccirrhosis)
  • Other people at higher risk of severe disease who may be eligible for COVID-19 treatment if they tested positive
  • Pregnant people
  • Patient-facing healthcare workers
  • Staff, volunteers, residents/inpatients, essential care providers, and visitors in highest risk settings
    • Highest risk settings include: hospitals (including complex continuing care facilities and paramedic services), and congregate living settings1with medically and socially vulnerable individuals, including, but not limited to long-term care homes, retirement homes, First Nation eldercare lodges, group homes, shelters, hospices, correctional institutions, and hospital schools.
  • Household members of staff in highest risk settings and patient-facing healthcare workers
  • Home and community care workers
  • Staff and students in Provincial and Demonstration Schools
  • Elementary and secondary students and education staff who have received aPCR self-collection kit through their school
  • International Agriculture Workers in congregate living settings
  • Patients seeking emergency medical care, at the discretion of the treating clinician
  • Other outpatients for whom a diagnostic test is required for clinical management, at the discretion of the treating clinician
  • People who are underhoused or experiencing homelessness
  • First responders, including fire, police and paramedics
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