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ACT Health prioritise COVID testing for close contacts and international travellers in Canberra | The Canberra Times

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Due to extremely high demand across the Christmas period, ACT Health will prioritise testing for people with the highest public health need at the Garran and Mitchell COVID-19 testing centres on Monday. This comes after wait times of more than four hours were reported over Christmas, with sites expected to be under additional pressure in the coming days, and the Mitchell testing site at capacity 90 minutes before opening on Monday morning. On Monday, between 11am and 3pm the Garran and Mitchell sites will only test close contacts, people who have symptoms of COVID-19 or returned international travellers. Due to current testing pressures, for fully vaccinated close contacts who require a test to exit quarantine, a negative test result collected on or after day five will be considered sufficient to exit quarantine after day seven provided they are symptom-free. People who are notified they are a close contact on day four after their exposure, and are fully vaccinated and symptom-free, may wish to delay their initial test to day five or later. People who need a test for other reasons can attend the Kambah testing centre during opening hours, or Mitchell or Garran before 11am and after 3pm. Meanwhile, the COVID testing site in Mitchell was at capacity 90 minutes before opening, as motorists were attempting to queue on Hoskins Street with staff directing people to leave and come back later. ACT Health said testing people with the highest risk of exposure, and symptoms, was a priority to protect the community. High demand caused by pre-travel testing requirements from other jurisdictions, has caused long waits at ACT Health testing centres. Wait times at outdoor testing centres have also been impacted by occasional weather delays. People aged five and over who require testing, and are not close contacts, symptomatic or returned international travellers, can still present for testing at our Kambah drive-through, which is open from 8am to 4pm, or at the Mitchell drive-through (8am-11am and 3pm-10pm) and the Garran COVID-19 Surge Centre (7.30am-11am and 3pm-9pm). READ ALSO: While extended waiting periods can be frustrating, ACT Health has asked people to show kindness and respect towards the testing staff. Our journalists work hard to provide local, up-to-date news to the community. This is how you can continue to access our trusted content:

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