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Starting Sunday, Feb. 21, COVID-19 testing will be mandatory for travellers who are exempt from self-isolation in Nova Scotia when they arrive by ferry from Newfoundland and Labrador.
Testing will take place at the Marine Atlantic ferry terminal in North Sydney. Other passengers are welcome to get tested.
“Testing is a key part of our defence against COVID-19. Given the variant strain and case numbers in Newfoundland, this is an added precaution to help protect everyone,” said Premier Stephen McNeil.
Testing at the ferry is only available for people who are passengers or crew. The standard lab test will be used.
Exempt travellers do not need to self-isolate while they wait for their test result. If exempt travellers arrive by ferry daily or almost every day, they can get tested once per week.
Testing continues to be available by appointment at primary assessment centres around the province. Pop-up sites offering rapid tests are continuing around the province for people who are 16 or older and have no symptoms.
“Even if you only have a tickle in your throat or a runny nose, don’t assume it’s just a cold. Get tested to be sure it’s not COVID-19,” said Dr. Robert Strang, Nova Scotia’s chief medical officer of health. “Regular testing is the best way to detect cases early and help prevent them from spreading.”
People who have one mild symptom, other than fever or new or worsening cough, do not have to isolate while waiting for their test and results. The online self-assessment is being updated to reflect this.