PRESS RELEASE - Pharmacists Manitoba Reminds Manitobans with Symptoms of COVID-19 and/or Close Contacts to Visit Provincial Testing Sites Instead of Pharmacies for Testing

On January 6, 2022 / News

Winnipeg, MB - January 6, 2022 – Pharmacists Manitoba is reminding Manitobans who have symptoms of COVID-19 and/or individuals have been a close contact of a positive case of COVID-19 to visit public testing sites for the appropriate testing.

“We need Manitobans to visit a public testing site if they have symptoms of COVID-19 or if they have been in close contact with a positive case,” says Ashley Hart, Past President of Pharmacists Manitoba. Hart adds, “Rapid antigen testing at pharmacies was always intended for asymptomatic individuals, that has not changed. However, moving forward asymptomatic close contacts of positive cases should now also visit public testing sites.”

Public testing sites in Manitoba are providing rapid antigen testing kits, free of cost, to individuals with symptoms, individuals age five and older with symptoms of COVID-19, asymptomatic close contacts of someone who has tested positive for COVID-19, and those advised by public health officials. The cost of a rapid antigen test administered by a Manitoba pharmacist ranges from $15 to $70. “It is an extremely busy time for Manitoba pharmacists, we are fielding many questions daily related to who can come into a pharmacy for a rapid antigen test, we wanted to help share the current public health recommendations to Manitobans,” says Hart.

Furthermore, many pharmacies will still continue to have rapid tests in-stock for service for those that do not have symptoms of COVID-19 and/or have not been a close contact of a positive case. As well, some pharmacies will continue to sell take-home rapid antigen tests to the public, however only nine self-testing devices have been approved by Health Canada and the supply of these devices is extremely low.