Toronto

Pearson airport to launch new COVID-19 testing study for staff, departing travellers

A new study will look at rapid COVID-19 tests at Toronto's Pearson airport. The Greater Toronto Airports Authority says the research will allow for widescale workplace testing.

New study will compare two available tests

The airport authority says the study will consider how to implement rapid PCR tests in an airport setting. (Evan Mitsui/CBC)

A new study will look at rapid COVID-19 tests at Toronto's Pearson airport.

The Greater Toronto Airports Authority says the research will allow for widescale workplace testing.

The tests should be available to all airport employees starting March 1 as well as to eligible departing travellers willing to
volunteer.

The study will also compare two types of tests — antigen testing and rapid polymerase chain reaction tests or PCR's.

The federal government requires PCR tests that look for the virus's genetic material. Antigen tests look for specific proteins from the virus.

The airport authority says the study will consider how to implement rapid PCR tests in an airport setting. Ottawa is paying for the study.

"This research will contribute substantial new scientific data to the body of knowledge used to fight this disease by improving access to testing that will identify, trace and isolate COVID-19," Deborah Flint, the CEO of the airports authority, said in a statement.

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