Public Service Announcement – Rapid Antigen Test (RAT) – January 13, 2022

News Type: 
Past COVID-19 Advisories

YELLOWKNIFE January 13, 2022 – The Office of the Chief Public Health Officer (OCPHO) is announcing that with the logistical support of the COVID Secretariat the rapid antigen test (RAT) distribution program is expanding to the Hay River and Fort Smith airports. Distribution at these airports will begin Saturday, January 15, 2022. In addition to these distribution points, residents and eligible visitors meeting the criteria outlined below and entering the NWT through the winter road from Fort Chipewyan will have additional access to at home RATs.

Travellers arriving from outside the territory at the Hay River and Fort Smith airports will be provided rapid antigen tests at a minimum of 2 per traveler. Individuals arriving from outside of the territory are asked to test themselves within 24 hours of their arrival and then again 72 hours later even if they are feeling no signs or symptoms of a COVID-19 infection. 

Residents travelling to Fort Smith via the winter road through Fort Chipewyan that can provide proof of travel from or through Fort Chipewyan can obtain tests if they also have an approved self-isolation plan. Starting on Sunday, January 16, 2022 tests will available for pick up at the airport at the following times:

  • Sunday between 3:00PM and 4:00PM
  • Monday – Friday between 4:00PM and 5:30PM

Non-residents that have been granted an exemption to enter the Northwest Territories by the Chief Public Health Officer must show proof that they travelled from, or through Fort Chipewyan, along with an approved self-isolation plan to obtain tests through the border test distribution program. Pick up times at the Fort Smith airport are the same as noted above.

These are similar requirements that individuals entering the Northwest Territories at other land border crossing would have to produce in order to be given a test kit. 


All commentary is attributable to Dr. Kami Kandola, Chief Public Health Officer for the Northwest Territories.

Media Contact

Richard Makohoniuk
Manager, COVID Communications
COVID-19 Coordinating Secretariat
Department of Health and Social Services
Government of the Northwest Territories