New Respiratory Outbreak Testing Prioritization Protocol

Advisory Alert

November 20, 2020

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To: Local health system partners


Update on testing prioritization during outbreaks

To prioritize the processing of respiratory outbreak samples and to ensure that results are received in a timely manner, the submitting facility, the public health unit, the testing laboratory, and the provincial laboratory network must work collaboratively to ensure that outbreak specimens are appropriately identified, contain the outbreak number assigned by the public health unit, are properly collected, and are handled and transported efficiently.

To ensure the prioritization of testing outbreak samples, Public Health Ontario has created a new Respiratory Outbreak Testing Prioritization Protocol. It can be downloaded here: (Public Health Ontario, PDF).

Please follow this new protocol to ensure that outbreak samples are processed efficiently and effectively, minimizing delays and maximizing sample processing turnaround times.

Please direct any questions you may have regarding respiratory outbreak sample collection to the Control of Infectious Diseases program at 705.522.9200, ext. 772.


Original Signed By

Dr. Penny Sutcliffe
Medical Officer of Health and Chief Executive Officer

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This item was last modified on November 20, 2020