COVID-19 Clinical Assessment Centre
Worsening symptoms due to COVID-19? Not sure? Questions?
Save Emergency Rooms for the emergencies
Our COVID-19 Clinical Assessment Centre team is here to help by offering the following:
- Quick, direct access to a clinician
- Alternative to the Emergency Room for those with questions and moderate/worsening symptoms
- Phone-based triage option to start (often avoids need for in-person visit)
- Booked appointments with a clinician, typically SAME DAY (no need to wait your turn in the ER waiting room – show up at your scheduled time and come right in)
- On-site testing, 12- to 24-hour turnaround on results (provincial testing eligibility will apply)
- COVID-specific treatment with approved medications as applicable
Where is it?
Northumberland Hills Hospital, 1000 DePalma Drive, Cobourg. The COVID-19 Clinical Assessment Centre is currently operating from the portable trailer outside the NHH Emergency Department.
How do I access?
Please CALL AHEAD to 1-905-377-7783 or toll free 1-833-678-2435 for a phone-based assessment prior to arriving on site. Walk-in patients are no longer accepted as our hours of operation are changing to match demand.
In all urgent situations, call 911 or go directly to the nearest Emergency Department.
Frequently Asked Questions
Call 1-905-377-7783 or 1-833-678-2435 to speak to a COVID-19 Clinical Assessment Centre navigator. You will be directed as appropriate and, if deemed appropriate, scheduled with an appointment to come to the Centre for an Assessment or test. Note that assessment does not necessarily mean testing will be required. Testing will be provided based on eligibility and clinical assessment.
Health care providers (such as area family physicians, nurse practitioners or Telehealth nurses) are currently being provided with information on our enhanced service and will be encouraged to refer individuals for assessment, reducing burden on local primary care and focusing specialized skills in one Centre. A ‘typical’ referral could be an individual whose symptoms are not improving on their own, COVID-19 is suspected or confirmed and further assessment and closer assessment/monitoring by a health care professional may be required.
No, walk-ins are no longer accepted. Effective May 28, 2022 we are changing our hours of operation to better meet demand. Patients or their care providers are encouraged to call the Centre first to speak with a navigator to confirm that a visit to the Centre is required. The team will schedule appointments in such a way that physical distance within the Centre can be maintained at all times. In all urgent situations, the same rule applies: call 911 or go directly to the nearest Emergency Department.
Ontario recently updated its COVID-19 testing guidelines, to ensure publicly funded testing and case and contact management resources are focused on the highest-risk settings to protect the most vulnerable and to help keep critical services running. The NHH COVID-19 Clinical Assessment Centre will continue to administer testing based on the province’s testing guidelines. We realize that many have questions. Assessments are primarily intended for those with worsening symptoms due to known or suspected COVID-19 but consultation will be available to anyone with a question or concern—for example, for the parent of a child with influenza-like symptoms--through our navigators. Call the Centre at 1-905-377-7783 or 1-833-678-2435 (toll free). We are here to help or we will do our best to get you the help you need.
The most common symptoms of COVID-19 that require immediate self-isolation and, if eligible, COVID-19 testing include:
- Fever (temperature of 37.8°C/100.0°F or greater) and/or chills
- Cough (that is new or worsening (e.g. continuous, more than usual if chronic cough) including croup (barking cough, making a whistling noise when breathing)
- Not related to other known causes or conditions for which current symptoms do not represent a flare-up/exacerbation related to infection (e.g., chronic obstructive pulmonary disease)
- Shortness of breath (dyspnea, out of breath, unable to breathe deeply, wheeze, that is worse than usual if chronically short of breath)
- Not related to other known causes or conditions (e.g., chronic heart failure, asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease)
- Decrease or loss of smell or taste
- Not related to other known causes or conditions (e.g., nasal polyps, allergies, neurological disorders)
For a complete listing of all symptoms associated with COVID-19, including the latest updates, please refer to the Ministry of Health COVID website here.
Your risk of serious illness is determined based on a combination of your health, age, and vaccination status, based on an assessment from a health care provider. You might be at higher risk if you are:
- Immunocompromised (have an immune system that is weakened by a health condition or medications);
- 70 years of age or older:
- 60 years of age and older with less than three vaccine doses;
- 18 years of age or older with less than three vaccine doses and at least one risk condition. Risk conditions include: diabetis, obesity, heart disease, hypertension, congestive heart failure, chronic lung disease (including cystic fibrosis), moderate or severe kidney disease, intellectual or developmental disability, cerebral palsy, sickle cell disease, moderate or sever liver disease, pregnancy.
If you are not sure about your risk, or if you have concerns or questions about influenza-like illness, call the COVID-19 Clinical Assessment Centre and one of our navigators will help you assess your current symptoms and determine next steps.
Yes, NHH’s COVID-19 Clinical Assessment Centre is for patients with worsening symptoms due to COVID-19 and those with influenza-like illness and concerns, particularly those without an area doctor or who have been unable to get an appointment. Please call the Assessment Centre line and speak to one of our navigators for advice. If required, a primary care provider on our team can provide an assessment.
The COVID-19 Clinical Assessment Centre is not intended for patients with very severe COVID-19 symptoms. These individuals should continue to call 911 or go directly to the nearest Emergency Department for urgent care.