covid test toronto

People are waiting for hours in line for COVID-19 tests at Toronto hospitals

If you're looking to get a COVID-19 test in Toronto, be prepared to wait in line for hours. 

People are now sharing photos and videos of the long lineups in front of hospitals and testing centres around the city, including Toronto Western Hospital, Mount Sinai Hospital, Women's College Hospital and others. 

While some people have pointed out that long lineups are inevitable as a second wave of the virus approaches, others are shocked that the wait time has been three to four hours. 

People have even posted photos of lineups stretching multiple blocks.

For many residents, these lines have sparked health and safety concerns, not only for having to be around others who potentially have COVID-19, but also because there appears to be little physical distancing. 

"I stood in line for 2 hours this afternoon for a Covid-19 test, if I didn't have Covid before I probably do now," one person tweeted

Toronto resident Valeriia has attempted to get a COVID-19 test for two straight days with her husband and small child. On Monday, she tried to go to the drive-thru COVID-19 testing centre in Etobicoke around 4 p.m. but was told they were at capacity. She then went to St. Joseph's Hospital.

"The line probably was over one hundred people, so it wrapped around the hospital building, on the other side toward the Queensway. That's how long it was," Valeriia, who asked to use her first name only, told blogTO. 

As a result, she and her family went home and decided to test their luck again on Tuesday. However, things weren't any better. 

"We decided to come back in the morning to the Etobicoke drive-thru. We came at 7:58 a.m. and there were already over one hundred cars before us," she said, adding that the centre opens at 8 a.m. 

"The first car drove into the tent at 8:40 a.m., so this has been very interesting."

In response to these "ridiculous"  lineups, Premier Doug Ford said on Tuesday that Ontario residents may soon be able to get tested at local pharmacies. This also prompted Mayor John Tory to call for hours at assessment centres to be extended.

"The good news here is that people are going to be tested. If they have concerns, if they have some symptoms, if they feel that they have been in touch with somebody with COVID-19 we want them to be tested. But they also deserve to be tested in a timely manner and we are aware that there are some significant lineups in many parts of Ontario," Health Minister Christine Elliott told reporters on Tuesday.

Ontario currently has more than 45,000 COVID-19 cases while Toronto has more than 16,000. 

Lead photo by

Nick Iozzo

Join the conversation Load comments

Latest in City

A neighbourhood in Toronto is now filled with inflatable holiday llamas

New report shows Ontario's COVID response not actually led by chief health expert

Ontario releases official guidelines for celebrating holidays amid the pandemic

People in Toronto are demanding that the city allow tiny shelters this winter

Toronto taxi driver hailed as hero for rescuing pigeon from traffic

Here's what you need to know about the Toronto Zoo's new holiday drive-thru

Toronto neighbourhood uses For Lease signs to shed light on struggling small businesses

Here are the rules for mask usage during Toronto's lockdown