Alberta pharmacies to test for COVID-19

City of Red Deer back to one active case of the virus

Albertans will soon be able to get tested for COVID-19 at pharmacies.

Health Minister Tyler Shandro says people with no symptoms of the disease will be able to be tested in drug stores.

“In the coming days, a number of community pharmacies with the skills and capacity will offer testing to Albertans without symptoms and no known exposure to COVID-19,” he said, adding this is in addition to the screening already offered provincewide by Alberta Health Services.

The announcement came as the provincial government confirmed 26 new cases of COVID-19, during a live update Thursday afternoon.

Of the 7,851 total confirmed cases in Alberta, 506 are active, 7,191 have recovered and 154 have died.

A new case has been confirmed in Red Deer, according to geospatial mapping on the government’s website.

This comes just one day after the city was declared clear of confirmed active cases – Red Deer has 35 recovered cases in addition to its one active case.

Alberta’s central zone has three active cases: the other two are located in Drumheller and Beaver County.

Sylvan Lake, Lacombe and Ponoka County each have two recovered cases. Lacombe County and Stettler County each have three recovered cases, and Clearwater County has just one recovered case.

Twelve people have recovered from the virus in Red Deer County. Olds and Mountain View County each have four recovered cases.

Testing offered to asymptomatic people at community pharmacies will be available in the coming days at 20 pharmacies in Alberta, mostly in Calgary and Edmonton. More pharmacies across the province will offer this form of testing in the coming weeks, said Shandro.

“This is a step that just makes sense. Pharmacists are highly trained health professionals and pharmacies support the health care of residents in their communities every day. Testing is well within pharmacists’ scope of practice and their competence.”

The pharmacy test is a throat swab, which will be sent to Alberta labs for analysis, Shandro said. Participating pharmacies will receive specialized training and will follow strict protocols, he added.

Dr. Deena Hinshaw, Alberta’s chief medical officer of health, said testing is “one of the most important tools we have” to keep Albertans protected.

“We know that strong testing data helps us understand how our communities are affected by COVID-19,” said Hinshaw.



Send your news tips

Like us on Facebook and Follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

UPDATED: Red Deer has nine active COVID-19 cases

Number of cases increased by 107 Friday

“My world exploded,” says Bentley-area farmer who’s swather was struck by a motorist

Dennis Duncan was a mile from home when his swather was struck by another travelling at high speeds

Man sentenced to 7 years for gas-and-dash death of Alberta gas station owner

Ki Yun Jo was killed after Mitchell Sydlowski sped off in a stolen cube van without paying for $198 of fuel

New owners of Sylvan Lake Canadian Tire looking to be big part of the community

Randy and Alison Patton are the new owners of Sylvan Lake Canadian Tire

Alberta shifting to ‘targeted approach’ to asymptomatic COVID-19 testing

Alberta’s central zone down to 29 active cases

Notley to stay on as Alberta NDP leader for 2023 provincial election

The NDP took almost all of Edmonton but few seats outside of the city

Young Canadians have curtailed vaping during pandemic, survey finds

The survey funded by Heart & Stroke also found the decrease in vaping frequency is most notable in British Columbia and Ontario

B.C., Alberta sending nearly 300 fire personnel by Friday to help battle wildfires in Oregon

Some 230 firefighters, most from British Columbia but including a number from Alberta, will be deployed Friday

Death of mother grizzly a ‘big loss’ for bear population in Banff park: experts

The bear, known as No. 143, spent most of her time in the backcountry of Banff

U.S.-Canadian border closure reportedly could extend through November

The border between the two countries has been closed to non-essential travel since March 21

Threat of fall federal election eases as COVID-19 cases continue to rise

Congeniality emerged as fears of second wave of COVID-19 were heightened after another case increase

Intoxicated male arrested by Ponoka RCMP passes away after fall

Incident remains under investigation by ASIRT

Most Read