COVID-19 Business Support

Rapid Screening for Businesses

Jun 15, 2021

The Guelph Chamber of Commerce and Innovation Guelph have partnered to provide small to medium sized businesses with free COVID-19 rapid screening kits.

If you are interested in participating in this program, please read ALL of the information below before completing your order form. Please note that this program requires you to agree to the terms and conditions of the program, you will have to dedicate human resource(s) to administering the program, and requires you to report all of your results via our reporting tool. 

What is this program?

  • This program is part of the Provincial Antigen Screen Program (PASP) which aims to provide rapid screening as an additional safety measure to help guard against the spread of COVID-19 in the workplace.
  • The Guelph Chamber of Commerce is volunteering to lead this initiative in our community and we've partnered with Innovation Guelph for site and staff support.

What is the cost?

  • There is no cost to participate in this program, however you must commit to providing at your own cost, the appropriate human resources and all equipment and supplies (other than the Screening Kits themselves) required to perform the screening. 

Who can participate?

  • Local businesses with 1 to 150 employees or less can participate in this program.
  • This is for businesses and their employees only - businesses cannot test customers/clients and individuals cannot order kits for personal purposes.
  • If your business has 150+ employees, you can order directly through the Province here.
  • The Government of Canada is providing free rapid COVID-19 tests to organizations for regular workplace screening of close-contact employees. Click here for more information.

What is required of the employer?

To participate in this program, you must:

  • Agree to all of the program terms and conditions.  
  • Designate a Supervisor in your organization to oversee and help perform the screenings. 
  • Report all of your results on our portal here, at least once per week. 
  • This information will be sent to the Ministry of Health but has no personal information regarding test results. 

What is the screen called and how does the screening work?

  • Currently, we have the Abbott PanBio COVID-19 Ag-Rapid tests.
  • These screens are completed through a nasal swab that is not invasive. The swab will be inserted into each nostril about 2 cm (1 inch) for 5-7 seconds, while ensuring the inside of the nostril is wiped by the swab for that amount of time.
  • Rapid antigen POCT are less sensitive and specific than lab-based PCR tests, meaning that results are not as accurate. As such, rapid antigen POCT may yield some false negative test results (i.e., a result that indicates the individual is not infected with COVID-19 when in fact they are), and to a lesser extent, some false positive test results (i.e., a result that indicates the individual is infected with COVID-19 when in fact they are not).
  • In particular this is why NO ONE SHOWING SYMPTOMS should be screened using these tests, as a false negative result might put the organization in a compromising position.

Who is screened and how often?

  • These screens are for asymptomatic employees only. No one showing any symptom of COVID-19 should use this screen. Anyone showing any symptoms of COVID-19 must immediately contact public health to get a PCR test.
  • The guidance from the province (linked here) states that “In general, individuals who have previously been infected with and recovered from COVID-19 should not undergo repeat testing/antigen screening, unless otherwise directed by local public health or their health care provider as per their symptom and exposure history.” Employees who have had a COVID-19 infection and have recovered should not participate in the rapid screening. 

  • It is recommended that each employee is screened 2x per week. Some businesses may want to test their employees more frequently because of the setting or higher frequency of close contact. If that is the case for your business, please contact us at chamber@guelphchamber.com and we will try to fulfil the order if possible. Providing screening kits to test more frequently will affect our supply and we will need notice in order to alert our supplier.
  • Please note that these screens are for employees only, and cannot be ordered or used for personal purposes. 

Who can perform the screens on employees?

  • The Ontario Government authorizes “self” screening for these kits. However, there is a requirement that screenings are supervised by a Screening Supervisor. .
  • Employees must do their own screenings; no one should perform a screening on anyone else. The Screening Supervisor is present during the screenings to instruct employees and ensure the procedure is followed for an accurate result.

How do I use the screens?

  • Click here to watch a video tutorial on how to use and administer these screens.
  • Click here to read further guidance from the Province.

What happens if an employee has a positive or inconclusive result?

  • Anyone who receives a positive or inconclusive result from the screening kit MUST immediately self-isolate and contact public health to book an appointment for a PCR test.
  • Anyone with a positive or inconclusive result cannot be permitted in the workplace until there is a confirmed negative PCR test result from public health.

How do we dispose of the waste?

  • There are two components of these kits that are considered bio-hazardous waste (after use) - the extraction tube with the swab and buffer agent inside, and the rapid test device itself.
  • Some businesses may have the ability to dispose of this material safely. If your organization does not, there will be a disposal bin to appropriately dispose of this waste that can be accessed when you are picking up your refill order at Innovation Guelph. You must bring all of your used waste inside of a plastic bag, so you place the entire bag inside the waste bin. 

I noticed there are two packages marked “Control Swabs” in each box of screening kits. What do we use them for?

  • Contained in each box of screening kits, you will find two “Control Swabs”.
  • One of those swabs will produce a negative result and the other swab will produce a positive result.
  • These control swabs are ONLY to be used for quality control purposes. If you are finding that the results of screening kits from a particular box are not showing up on the testing pads, then you can follow the process in the manual provided to do a quality control check of the pads by simply following the same testing regime.
  • Do not swab anyone with these control swabs; the swabs already have ingredients on them to produce results in the quality control process.
  • While the positive control swab will show positive for COVID-19, there is nothing on the swab that is infectious or that will pass COVID-19 to a person. It is a pre-loaded swab and should not be used for anything other than quality control, if required.

What happens when I run out of screens?

  • Due to supply, each organization will get a two-week allotment of screening kits. When you're kits are 50-70% used up, it is recommended that you place a refill order. We cannot guarantee supply.

What happens after I place my order?

  • Once your order is placed, we will be notified and will contact you as soon as possible via phone or email with a pickup date and time.
  • Please note that due to high initial demand, we may take 1-2 business days to assign you a pickup date and time.
  • At this time, we unfortunately cannot allow you to choose from a selection of pickup dates and times. If the assigned date and time does not work for you, please let us know and we will do our best to accommodate you.
  • PLEASE DO NOT SHOW UP TO THE PICKUP LOCATION WITHOUT YOUR CONFIRMED PICKUP DATE AND TIME*

What happens when I arrive to pickup my order?

  • All orders will be distributed for pickup at Innovation Guelph (located at 361 Southgate Dr., Guelph, ON, N1G 3M5).
  • Please ensure you arrive on time for your pickup. Failure to arrive at your assigned pickup time will mean you won’t be able to pickup your kits and you’ll be placed at the bottom of the waiting list to be assigned a new date and time.
  • When you arrive on site, please put your mask on and follow the signage. If no volunteer is outside at the table, please follow the signs to ring the doorbell. A volunteer will ask you to confirm your organization name and will place your kits on the table outside. 

 

IMPORTANT REMINDER: 

The Guelph Chamber of Commerce and Innovation Guelph are volunteering their staff time and capacity to administer this program. Please remember to be patient and kind to all Guelph Chamber and Innovation Guelph staff members during this process. Thank you.

 

Ready to order? 

BEFORE YOU PLACE YOUR ORDER, YOU WILL NEED TO COMPLETE THE FOLLOWING TASKS:
  1. Ensure you have read all of the information above. Remember, this is to test employees only. You cannot test customers/clients or use this for individual purposes. 
  2. Ensure you have read the Terms and Conditions here. 
  3. Watch this video, instructing you how to perform the test (please note we will send you a follow up email with this video so you can show your employees).

Ready to report your results? 

Questions? Please us at chamber@guelphchamber.com or 519-822-8081 ext. 6.
Thanks to the City of Guelph, Economic Development for supporting this program.