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Rapid Community Testing arrives in Newark and Sutton

Covid-19 testing available for anyone not showing symptoms.

Around 1 in 3 people infected with Covid-19 show no symptoms at all and could potentially spread the disease without knowing it. In a bid to stop the spread, two new testing sites are opening this week bringing the total number of asymptomatic testing sites in Nottinghamshire to 7.

The new testing centres at the Newark Sports and Fitness Centre, Lord Hawke Way, off Bowbridge Road and the Lammas Leisure Centre, Sutton will help drive down transmission rates and represent a leap forward in the fight against the spread of Covid-19.

The two new sites, which have been set up in just 7 days, give anyone the opportunity to get tested.  This will be particularly helpful to working aged-residents, with no symptoms, who have to travel to an essential place of work.  No appointments are necessary at the testing site, when you arrive you’ll be asked to register.

The test takes only a few seconds and within 40 minutes the result is delivered directly to your smartphone if you have one. The test is designed to identify anyone who may have the virus and who may be, unwittingly, putting their colleagues, households or support bubbles at risk.

Councillor David Lloyd, Leader of Newark and Sherwood District Council said, “It’s essential we identify potential carriers of Covid-19 more quickly, before it is spread out into our wider community. We are urging any resident or worker in Newark to help us uncover Covid-19 to help stop the spread.

“The quick and simple test could help save lives.  It really is that important.  Even if you feel completely well and believe you have not come into contact with anyone, you could still be carrying Covid-19 which could be spread to others. One simple test could prevent a number of people in our community becoming extremely unwell.

“The Community testing sites are there for anyone, there is no greater risk posed in going to this testing site than to a vaccination site or to a supermarket.  The infection control measures in place ensure everyone’s safety.  Staff wear PPE, there are regularly cleaning systems in place and all staff are tested daily.”

If you aren’t showing any symptoms then you can go to any of the community testing sites without an appointment. Anyone who has to leave home to work are encouraged to get a test regularly. The recommendation is to get tested twice a week. If you are showing symptoms, then the advice remains unchanged, self-isolate, ring 119 and book a test at a walk through test centre such as the one at Castle House in Newark.

The District Council will be offering local businesses and employers support materials to encourage their workers to come down and play their part by getting a test.

“The tests being used at the new Community Testing sites in Newark and Ashfield are the rapid lateral flow tests. They deliver results in around 40 minutes and are a valuable addition to the fight against Coronavirus. Getting tested regularly will help stop the spread by identifying cases earlier,” adds Jonathan Gribbin, Director of Public Health for Nottinghamshire. “We are finding that rates in some parts of the county are reducing more slowly than elsewhere in the country.  Over the last week or so, rates in Newark & Sherwood have increased slightly.  The availability of this asymptomatic community testing site will be a useful additional tool for local people to stop the spread, alongside the all-important lockdown and Hands, Face, Space rules which remain essential for everyone to follow.”

Health Minister Lord Bethell said:

“We’ve already come so far since first setting up a national testing programme at an unprecedented pace to help counter Covid-19, but we continue to strive to go further, faster.

“Around one in three people have the virus without symptoms so could be spreading the disease without knowing it. Broadening testing to identify those showing no symptoms will mean finding positive cases more quickly, and break chains of transmission.

“I’m delighted that Newark and Sherwood District Council are working with us to roll out community testing in Newark, and I look forward to seeing the results.”

The new test centre opens on Thursday 18 February at the Newark Sports and Fitness Centre, Lord Hawke Way, off Bowbridge Road in Newark. It is open Tuesday to Friday from 8:00am to 6:00pm and Saturdays from 8:30am to 1:30pm to anyone who has no symptoms of Covid-19 and who hasn’t had a positive test in the last 90 days. Under 16s can be tested but must be accompanied by an adult.

Find out more by visiting our website www.newark-sherwooddc.gov.uk/coronavirus/

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