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B.C. to provide free rapid antigen tests to those older than 50

People are eligible for one kit containing five tests every 28 days.
antigentesttwo
A rapid COVID-19 test shows a negative result

B.C. plans to provide free rapid antigen test kits to those older than 50 years old via pharmacies starting Friday (March 11), Health Minister Adrian Dix said this afternoon.

Eligible individuals will be able to pick up one kit containing five tests every 28 days. They will need to show their personal health number, and other identification. 

Friends or relatives are able to pick up the tests for the eventual recipient, but they would have to provide the recipient's name, personal health number and date of birth. 

Since Feb. 25, these tests have been available for those aged 70 and older. People older than 60 years old became eligible on March 7.

The government's plan is to lower the age of those eligible for the free tests in tranches. 

The aim is also for people to pick up the tests before they are symptomatic so they are able to use them if they do start to feel sick. 

"As of this morning 1,323,430 tests have been dispensed by 1287 pharmacies," Dix said today.

"Increased test availability means that more members of the general population will be able to access tests to use to understand their own symptoms and illness and to take action to limit transmission to their family, friends and work, including those at higher risk. 

gkorstrom@biv.com

@GlenKorstrom