In support for health-care workers and COVID-19 testing
Letter to the Editor
B.C.’s health-care workers are doing an exceptional job under the most challenging of circumstances. They deserve the support of all of us, particularly now as we work together to manage this next phase of the pandemic.
We have received reports of health-care workers at COVID-19 testing centres being intimidated, threatened and otherwise verbally harassed by some people seeking tests. The Government of B.C. recently brought into force the Access to Services Act to help protect the safety and well-being of health-care workers at testing centres, and impeding services or intimidating workers at these sites is illegal. Incidents of threats and aggressive behaviour will be reported to police. Our health-care workers need a safe and respectful workplace, free of abuse and threats of violence, so they can continue their work to keep us safe.
It’s also important for all of us to follow public health guidance on testing, to ensure tests are available for those who need them most, for clinical management.
If you do not have any symptoms, you do not need to be tested. Please do not attempt to access testing services. This will allow health-care workers to prioritize care to those who need it.
If you have had a test recommended by a medical professional or the online COVID-19 Self-Assessment Tool, please seek a COVID-19 test through your local health authority.
As a reminder, if you are feeling unwell at all, even if you think it isn’t COVID-19, even if you think it is just a mild cold or flu, you need to stay away from others until you feel better.
If you have severe symptoms, seek medical help right away.
We continue to urge all British Columbians to follow all provincial health officer orders, stay home when sick, wear a mask in all indoor public spaces, keep your distance from others when you are out, wash your hands frequently and most importantly, if you haven’t done so already, get vaccinated.
Dr. Bonnie Henry, B.C.’s provincial health officer, Adrian Dix, Minister of Health, and Mike Farnworth, Minister of Public Safety and Solicitor General