Rapid community COVID-19 testing launches in Hertfordshire
- Credit: PA/Jane Barlow
Key and essential workers who cannot work from home are being encouraged to book regular rapid COVID-19 tests at 'pop-up' sites as part of Hertfordshire’s new community testing scheme.
Community testing ‘pop-up’ sites and roving vehicles are now operating across the county and offer free coronavirus tests to those without symptoms, with results available in 45 minutes.
The University of Hertfordshire's College Lane Campus in Hatfield is now home to one of the largest rapid testing centres in the county.
The rapid testing programme will help identify those who are infected, which will in turn aid the breaking of the chain of transmission - which is especially important among those who do not display symptoms. This will ensure that essential services in Hertfordshire are as safe as possible.
Hertfordshire County Council’s cabinet member for public health and prevention, Tim Hutchings, said: “Around one in three people who have coronavirus have no symptoms, which means they can spread the virus to their loved ones without realising.
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“By taking a rapid test, it means you will know almost immediately if you have coronavirus, so that you can protect your family, friends and community and ultimately break the chain of transmission of the virus.”
Quintin McKellar, vice-chancellor of the University of Hertfordshire said: “We are proud to be partnering with Hertfordshire County Council to support our fantastic local critical workers to receive asymptomatic testing and help minimise the risk and transmission of the coronavirus locally.
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“As a result of our own onsite asymptomatic testing centre, opened last year, and our extensive on campus safety measures, we have continued to maintain a consistently low number of infections in our community.
"Opening this new service for Hertfordshire residents at the university’s College Lane campus is part of our ongoing commitment to do whatever we can to help the local and national fight against COVID-19.”
Testing is available for those without symptoms by appointment only, with booking available for up to a week in advance via hertfordshire.gov.uk/rapidtest.
People with symptoms should book a standard coronavirus test at gov.uk/coronavirus.