New COVID-19 mobile testing unit and home test sites open for Yate neighbourhood
A NEW mobile testing site and two 'collect and drop' venues for people to pick up COVID-19 home testing kits are opening for people with BS37 8 postcodes.
The postcode area, which includes homes between Shire Way and Rodford Way in Yate, plus Westerleigh and Wapley, is included in the 'community surge testing programme' aiming to detect how far a new variant of the virus is spreading among people who do not have any symptoms.
The new mobile testing site at Yate Common, off Westerleigh Road, was due to open on Wednesday morning and stay open for the next two weeks, from 9am to 6pm, seven days per week.
Collect and drop sites, where people can pick up a kit to carry out a test at home then bring it back to be taken to a lab, were due to open at Shireway Community Centre, in Shire Way, on Wednesday morning and at Westerleigh Village Hall, in Shorthill Road, on Thursday.
Collect and drop sites are open from 9am-5pm, seven days a week.
The testing programme is only for people aged over 16, who live or work somewhere with a BS37 8 postcode. People with other BS37 postcodes are not part of the programme, which is targeting specific areas of South Gloucestershire and Bristol.
It is also only for people who do not have any of the most common COVID-19 symptoms - a high temperature, persistent cough or loss of taste or smell. Anyone suffering those symptoms, regardless of the area where they live, should call 119 or visit www.gov.uk/get-coronavirus-test online to book a test.
The collect and drop test takes about 10-15 minutes and involves filling in some details online, swabbing your tonsils and up one nostril, then sealing the swab in a tube, bag and a box.
Afterwards the box needs to be dropped back at the site.
People can collect tests for themselves, members of their family or for someone they know who is not able to leave their home.
The mobile testing unit is for anyone who wants an on-the-spot test or is not online.
Sara Blackmore, Director of Public Health at South Gloucestershire Council, said: “We strongly encourage people to get a one-off test at their nearest site to help us learn more about the variant and reduce local infection rates.
“This is additional community surge testing that will take place over the next couple of weeks to really enhance our local efforts. We’re also asking employers in the specific postcodes to encourage their employees to get a test if they are eligible.”
You can get a test if you’ve been vaccinated, and if you are currently having repeat lateral flow (rapid) testing for work.
If you have had a positive test result in the past 90 days you do not need to take a test.
The other South Gloucestershire postcodes involved in the programme are all in the BS16 postcode area south of the M4.
For more details visit the council's COVID-19 testing page.