Working together, The London Chamber of Commerce and TechAlliance of Southwestern Ontario, in partnership with the Ontario and Canadian governments, have launched The StaySafe™ London Rapid Antigen Screening Program. Through this initiative, small and medium-sized businesses in London, ON can engage in self-administered rapid antigen screening to asymptomatic employees. Rapid antigen screening is another tool to help open our economy and keep it open.
The StaySafe™ London Rapid Antigen Screening Program will provide free rapid antigen tests for employees of small and medium-sized businesses, with 150 employees or less. The goal of the program is to identify asymptomatic cases of COVID-19 in the workplace that might otherwise be missed, helping to curb the spread in the workplace, at home and in the community. “The London Chamber of Commerce is incredibly proud to be working with our partners at TechAlliance to deliver this program to our business community. By getting these kits into the hands of small and medium employers, it is our hope that we can play our part in reducing the spread of COVID-19 and expedite the recovery of our local economy.” said Graham Henderson, CEO, London Chamber of Commerce.
Business owners must place orders for screening kits online at StaySafeLondon.ca. The kits will be offered free of cost thanks to the Federal and Provincial governments, giving businesses direct access to screening kits to implement rapid screening programs for their employees. Businesses who have ordered kits will receive a two-week supply, based on the twice-weekly screening of their employees– frequent screening with rapid antigen tests increases the chances of early identification of cases in otherwise asymptomatic individuals. The pain-free rapid screening test can be performed at the place of employment and does not require shipping a specimen to a lab for processing. It takes approximately 15 minutes to yield a result.
“In our efforts to pave the path to recovery quickly, rapid testing is an essential tool to curb the spread of COVID-19. Working closely with The London Chamber of Commerce we have been able to expedite this program in our community as an important support for small businesses and their employees,” said Christina Fox, CEO, TechAlliance.
Screening with rapid tests provides an extra layer of defence against the spread of the virus by identifying people who are not showing symptoms of infection but maybe carrying COVID-19 into their workplaces and communities. These initiatives are an important tool for detecting cases of COVID-19 but are not a substitute for current safety protocols including physical distancing, wearing a mask, hand washing, and staying home if sick.
London’s StaySafe™ Pick Up Headquarters is located at the London Chamber of Commerce office and is made possible by funding from the Digital Main Street program, with support from the Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario (FedDev Ontario) and the Government of Ontario, generous investments from London businesses, and the help of volunteers.