New fast Covid-19 testing centre opens in Uttlesford
From today, Monday 25 January, a new fast testing centre will be available in the Uttlesford district for those residents who DO NOT have symptoms of Covid-19.
The new testing centre will be located at Saffron Walden ECL, 39 Audley Road, Saffron Walden, CB11 3HD.
The site is the latest testing centre to open in Essex. These centres are among the first of their kind in the region, offering new and fast Lateral Flow Tests to the wider population. The tests are ONLY for people for who DO NOT have symptoms and give results in around 30 minutes.
Tests are by appointment only and bookings should be made online. Anyone booking should live in the Uttlesford district. Tests can be booked here: www.essex.gov.uk/getting-tested-for-covid-19/if-you-dont-have-symptoms.
Booking online is the quickest and most effective option for residents seeking a Lateral Flow Test.
Residents can also book by calling 0333 772 6144 to arrange an appointment. Lines are open from 8am to 8pm every day, including Saturday and Sunday.
They can also email: email@example.com and a member of staff will contact them to arrange an appointment.
Anyone WITH symptoms should book a test via the NHS Test and Trace App, or online here: www.gov.uk/get-coronavirus-test.
This additional centre has been established in response to the current infection rate in Uttlesford which has reached 440.3 per 100,000 (according to the latest available data here: www.essex.gov.uk/local-outbreak-control-plan/data-cases-in-essex-by-district).
Dr Mike Gogarty, Essex's Director of Public Health and Wellbeing, said: "Infection rates in Uttlesford are significant and local health services there and across the county are currently under strain as a result of the new variant of Covid-19. A 'critical incident' had been declared across Essex with critical care and bed capacity rising as well as high staff sickness and self-isolation levels.
"This additional testing centre will allow us to test even more people where we continue to see high rates. Thousands of people have already been tested at the fast testing centres we have opened.
"Testing people who feel well will help to identify the hidden cases in the community - people who may be unwittingly infecting others. If you test positive following one of the new fast tests, you will be asked to self-isolate, and take a further test to confirm the initial result. If positive, you will also be required to disclose any close contacts to the local or national contact tracing service.
"It is absolutely vital that in addition to these efforts, everyone continues to adhere to the appropriate Covid-19 guidance. This includes working from home wherever possible and socially distancing, particularly in indoor settings that are permitted to remain open, such as essential shops and supermarkets. Behave as if those around you have Covid-19 and maintain a two-metre distance from anyone outside of your household or support bubble at all times."
Cllr John Spence, Cabinet Member for Adults and Health at Essex County Council, said: "We are absolutely determined to do all we can to reduce the spread of Covid-19 in Essex, especially in the areas where we are seeing cases continue to increase considerably as a result of the new variant.
"Targeted testing programmes are one part of how we will continue to tackle the virus, in addition to everyone playing their part in following the latest lockdown rules to limit the spread. An appointment to carry out a Covid-19 test will count as an essential journey under the lockdown rules."
Cllr Petrina Lees, Deputy Leader and Portfolio Holder for Housing and Health at Uttlesford District Council, said: "It is welcome news that a site for Lateral Flow testing has opened in the District. The infection rate remains high in Uttlesford, and it is crucial that testing is increased to help reduce the spread.
"Rapid testing will now be the focus as we continue to tackle the virus, and I would urge residents without symptoms, particularly those who are unable to work from home and have no choice but to come into contact with others, to book a test and help keep our community safe."
Following a change in government policy on community Covid-19 testing, the PCR test sites at Turpin's Indoor Bowling Club, Saffron Walden, and Rowena Davey Centre, Great Dunmow will close once current stocks have gone but will remain open until 4 February for people to return completed tests. Get more details.
25 January 2021