Patient, Family & Caregiver Experience

We are currently experiencing a high volume of demand for COVID-19 testing.  Please:

  • First determine if you require a COVID-19 test by completing a self-assessment.
  • Do not seek testing at multiple COVID-19 assessment centres as this will result in delayed access and delayed test results for all.  If you have already booked an appointment at an assessment centre and can no longer make it, please cancel and/or rebook your time so others who need a test can be seen.
This is important to ensuring those in need can receive timely access to testing and timely access to test results.

This information was last updated on October 13, 2020. 


Assessment Centre FAQs

What is a COVID-19 Assessment Centre

The COVID-19 Assessment Centre at Stratford General Hospital is a clinic where people will be tested for COVID-19 if they meet current Ministry testing guidelines. Our goal is to ensure the health of our community by identifying disease early.

The COVID-19 Assessment Centre is operated by the Huron Perth Healthcare Alliance, in adherence to directives and guidelines provided by Ontario Health and Huron Perth Public Health.

Who should go to an Assessment Centre to be tested?

Ontarians should only seek testing at assessment centres if:
  • You are showing COVID-19 symptoms
  • You are a direct contact of a confirmed COVID-19 case, identified as:
    • A household contact (note this does not include contacts of contacts such as a friend of someone in your household).
    • Directed or recommended by public health via contact tracing or outbreak investigation. 
    • Notified via the COVID Alert app 
In addition, the following groups are eligible for testing at assessment centres regardless of the presence of symptoms: 
  • Workers in long-term care homes every two weeks.
  • Essential caregivers visiting a long-term care home 
  • Residents or workers in homeless shelters, or other congregate settings.  A list of congregate settings is outlined in guidance from the Ministry of Health.
  • Pre-operative patients prior to receiving general anaesthesia and cancer patients receiving therapy as outlined in guidance from the Ministry of Health.
  • International students that have passed their 14 day quarantine period, or who have developed symptoms within their 14-day period.
  • Farm workers 
  • Indigenous communities 
  • Individuals who need testing for international travel clearance.  (Please note this is an interim measure.  Please check ontario.ca/covidtest to ensure you have the most current information).
Targeted testing populations may change from time to time and individuals should confirm eligibility with their health care provider before seeking testing.

How do I book an appointment at HPHA’s COVID-19 Assessment Centre?

If you are a resident of Huron or Perth and are worried you have COVID-19 or have been exposed to it, you are encouraged to continue to use the Virtual Assessment Model that has been created which involves completing the province’s online assessment and if indicated, calling your family doctor to be assessed and sent for testing. Those without a family doctor, can call Huron Perth Public Health at 1-888-221-2133 ext. 3267. If you are a candidate for testing, you will be referred to an Assessment Centre.

If you are referred to our Assessment Centre at Stratford General Hospital, we highly recommend you use our online booking form.  With this form, you have the option to choose your appointment date and time. The form will require you to complete your personal information screening questions.

Appointments may also be requested by phone at 519-272-8210 ext. 2747.

Appointments must be booked. We cannot accommodate drive ups/walk ins.

How do I reschedule or cancel an online appointment?

Follow these steps:
  • Access your confirmation email
  • Click on the “Change your appointment” link
  • Choose one of the following options:
    • Reschedule
    • Cancel booking
    • New booking
  • The following message will pop up. “Are you sure you want to cancel this booking?” 
    • Choose "Cancel booking" to confirm your cancellation
      • Choose "Back" to go back to back to the previous options (reschedule or new booking) 
  • Message pops up “Your booking has been cancelled” 
  • Click “OK”
  • Confirmation email will be sent regarding reschedule or cancellation of appointment

How do I reschedule or cancel an appointment made by telephone or referral?

Call 519-272-8210 ext 2747 and follow the prompts.

What will happen when I get to HPHA’s COVID-19 Assessment Centre?

We are a drive-through centre located at the West Building Outpatient Clinic off West Gore Street at the Stratford General Hospital. You will see yellow Assessment Centre signs.

  1. Please bring your Health Card and remain in your vehicle.
  2. A greeter will come out to meet you to confirm your personal health information and ask screening questions.
  3. You will proceed onto the testing area where a Regulated Health Professional will conduct the test.

The test is similar to that of other respiratory illnesses and involves taking a sample from the nasal cavity with a swab.

Information about how to manage symptoms and next steps will be provided.

What if I want to visit my loved one in a long-term care home and I’m not at risk? Can I still get tested?

Yes, if you require a test for an indoor visit to a Long-Term Care (LTC) home, you can visit an Assessment Centre or participating pharmacy.

As ministry guidance is updated, it will be posted to the ministry website. LTC home visitors should continue to check the ministry website to ensure they have current information about testing options and locations available to them.

What if my employer is asking me to get tested?

We are only able to do occupational asymptomatic testing as directed by the Ministry of Health or the Ministry of Long-Term care.

Provincial guidance does not recommend testing of asymptomatic workers beyond those in specific at-risk settings such as a long-term care homes, homeless shelters or other congregate settings. Specific at-risk settings or groups eligible for publicly-funded testing will be identified based on Chief Medical Officer of Health guidance, which will continue to evolve in response to the pandemic.

Will the Assessment Centre issue absence notes for employment purposes?

No. The Assessment Centre has been established strictly to screen and assess patients for COVID-19. Notes for employment or other purposes will not be provided by physicians or other clinical staff.

What if I need to travel out of Canada and a negative COVID test is required by the jurisdiction I am travelling to?

As an interim measure, travelers who are asymptomatic and require a test to confirm that they do not have COVID-19 before travelling internationally can visit an Assessment Centre or make an appointment at a participating pharmacy.

As ministry guidance is updated, it will be posted on the ministry website. Travelers should continue to check the ministry website to ensure they have current information about testing options and locations available to them.

How will I get my test results?

Your test results for COVID-19 will be available online at covid-19.ontario.ca.

You will need to provide information such as your Ontario Health Card Number, your name, and date of birth, in order to access your results online.

Currently, it takes approximately 3 to 5 days to receive results, depending on demand. 

Please refer to the information package provided at the centre for directions for self-isolation guidelines while awaiting test results.

Are there other Assessment Centres in Huron and Perth?

Yes. Please visit Huron Perth Public Health’s website for information about Assessment Centres in Grand Bend, Goderich and Listowel.

For patients with no symptoms (asymptomatic) and who meet certain criteria, may be able to get tested at select pharmacies.