Testing for COVID-19: Increasing testing supply

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What Canada is doing

Testing and screening, along with local public health measures and vaccination, are important tools to limit the spread of COVID-19 and its variants.

Canada is:

Increasing testing options

Health Canada reviews testing devices to assess safety, effectiveness and quality before authorizing for sale in Canada. For us to authorize a test, the manufacturer must submit an application for review.

Health Canada has authorized over 100 different COVID-19 tests. We also continue to fast-track the review of COVID-19 tests, including new testing options.

We are currently prioritizing the review of tests that are:

Health Canada is also prioritizing the review of novel technology, such as breathalyzers, for use in Canada. We are working with manufacturers to ensure these novel technologies are safe and effective.

In all cases, manufacturers must prove that the test is safe and effective by the intended user before we will authorize it. For example, for self-testing kits, the manufacturer must prove that a person can use their test safely and effectively without being supervised by a health care professional.

Securing and distributing rapid tests

On behalf of the federal government, Public Services and Procurement Canada purchased hundreds of millions of COVID-19 rapid tests to distribute across the country. This purchase ensures that the Canada can increase testing capacity with authorized, proven and effective technologies. Find out about our rapid test agreements and the types of COVID-19 rapid tests purchased.

There is currently a delay in reporting the deployment of COVID-19 rapid tests due to the time it takes for tests to be:

The tables on this page show the number of COVID-19 rapid tests that have been:

These numbers are updated regularly.

Shipment and distribution of COVID-19 rapid tests in Canada:

Shipments in Canada by company/product
Shipment of COVID-19 rapid tests in Canada
CompanyFootnote * name Product name Tests received from suppliers Tests shipped to provinces/territories
Abbott Rapid Diagnostics ULC Panbio COVID-19 Ag Rapid Test 152,036,460 125,802,284
Abbott Rapid Diagnostics ULC ID Now Covid-19 7,023,024 5,777,000
Artron Laboratories Inc ARTRON COVID-19 ANTIGEN TEST 48,702,801 43,208,181
Becton Dickinson Canada Inc. BD Veritor™ System for Rapid Detection of SARS-CoV-2 12,256,290 9,986,860
Btnx Inc Rapid Response COVID-19 Antigen Rapid test Device 404,050,760 372,265,265
BioLytical Istatis COVID-19 Antigen Home Test 5,000,015 4,999,800
CanAm Scientific Inc. SARS-COV-2 Rapid Antigen Nasal SD Biosensor 1,663,700 438,120
Lucira Health Inc. Lucira CHECK✓IT COVID-19 Test Kit 689,268 397,808
Maverin Inc. ACON Flowflex SARS-CoV-2 Antigen Rapid Test 41,000,000 32,985,300
MSS Flowflex SARS-CoV-2 Antigen Rapid 5,000,000 0
Precision Biomonitoring Inc. (Canada) Triplelock SARS-CoV-2 Tests 3,506,000 3,506,000
Quidel Canada ULC Sofia SARS Antigen FIA 850,000 73,200
Quidel Canada ULC QuickVue At-Home OTC COVID Test 16,500,000 6,242,150
Roche Diagnostics SD Biosensor SARS-CoV-2 Rapid Antigen Self Test NASAL 38,642,297 12,926,597
Switch Health Holdings Inc. SD Biosensor, Inc Standard Q Covid 19 AG Nasal Test 60,350,000 55,991,325
Trimedic Therapeutics COVID-19 Antigen Rapid Test / Assuretech 7,857,080 7,857,080
2San Healthcare Group Inc. PCL Self-Test Covid-19 Ag 250,000 240,750
Total 805,377,695 682,697,720


Footnote *

"Company" may refer to the manufacturer of the device or a third-party supplier.

Return to footnote * referrer

Shipments to, distribution and inventory by provinces and territories
Shipment of COVID-19 rapid tests to and distribution by provinces/territories
Province/territory Tests shipped to province/territory Tests distributed by province/territory Estimated inventory by province/territory
Alberta 77,604,516 44,242,464 33,362,052
British Columbia 84,086,686 54,850,593 29,236,093
Manitoba 24,501,907 17,502,490 6,999,417
New Brunswick 18,521,234 18,184,152 337,082
Newfoundland and Labrador 9,557,845 4,970,465 4,587,380
Nova Scotia 24,270,478 15,119,462 9,151,016
Northwest Territories 774,986 405,405 369,581
Nunavut 762,704 253,128 509,576
Ontario 264,024,287 206,743,710 57,280,577
Prince Edward Island 3,819,978 2,877,708 942,270
Quebec 142,278,152 101,514,185 40,763,967
Saskatchewan 31,760,783 26,442,173 5,318,610
Yukon 734,164 462,291 271,873
Total 682,697,720 493,568,226 189,129,494
Note: The difference between tests shipped to and deployed by provinces/territories may be an under- or over-estimate of actual inventories. This is because some provinces and territories may procure their own tests, and reporting on deployment varies.
Federal allocation

As of March 21, 2023

Federal distribution of COVID-19 rapid tests to workplaces, community groups and non-profit organizations
Recipient Tests shipped
Private-sector workplacesFootnote * 13,875,510
Federal departments/ agencies, RCMP, Canadian Armed Forces (CAF), workplaces 7,006,077
Community groups and non-profit organizationsFootnote ** 8,692,096
Total 29,573,683


Footnote *

Includes tests shipped directly from Health Canada to medium-large organizations and to participating pharmacy distributors for re-distribution to Small-Medium Enterprises

Return to footnote * referrer

Footnote **

Includes tests shipped to Canadian Red Cross and northern grocers for re-distribution to registered charities or non-profit organizations (for workplaces or individual distribution), gateway airports, and Northern, Remote and Isolated Communities, etc.

Return to footnote ** referrer

Supporting testing capacity across Canada

The federal government has provided $4.28 billion to the provinces and territories to help them:

Canada is also providing funding and support to improve and modernize data management. This will help all levels of government coordinate their efforts to contain the virus.

For more information, refer to:

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