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A fifth of British Columbians have been tested for COVID-19: survey

Last Updated Oct 20, 2020 at 1:22 pm PST

FILE -- COVID-19 testing. (AP Photo/John Minchillo)

About 20 per cent of B.C. residents have been tested for COVID-19, according to a new survey

Close to 75 per cent of B.C. residents have chosen to use telehealth services during the pandemic, survey says

Respondents revealed rapid testing would encourage them to safely engage in more social, economic activities

VANCOUVER (NEWS 1130) — One in five British Columbians has been tested for COVID-19, according to a new survey for Greater Vancouver Board of Trade.

The survey, by Leger, also found close to 75 per cent of B.C. residents chose to use telehealth services over in-person doctor appointments (42 per cent) during the pandemic.

More than 80 per cent of those who used telehealth services were satisfied and intend to continue to access electronic healthcare options.

Just over half indicated they would use telehealth in the next six months.

“Having an accurate picture of how the public thinks is crucial in terms of informing the many important decisions that need to be made as we build the next normal,” says Heather Owen, vice-president of Leger.

“This survey shows us the impact that health care advancements, such as rapid testing, could have on boosting British Columbians’ social and economic confidence,” adds Bridgitte Anderson, president and CEO of board of trade. “B.C. businesses stand ready to help, supporting the continued adoption of technology and innovation that is required for the future of care in our region.

READ ALSO: Health Canada approves rapid test for COVID-19

Respondents revealed that the introduction of rapid testing would encourage them to safely engage in more social and economic activities, including visiting restaurants, returning to the workplace, and travelling outside of Canada for pleasure.

The survey also found a third of B.C. residents admitted their mental health is worse since the COVID-19 pandemic started.

Asked what further advances to health care they’d like to see the B.C. Government support, 68 per cent of respondents named innovative treatments as their first or second choice.

COVID-19 testing was seen as successful, although respondents noted there is room for improvement in regards to following up.

Almost half of respondents indicated they have been working remotely during the pandemic.