BACK TO SCHOOL: Households to be offered home testing kits ahead of pupils return to classrooms

Lateral flow test kits
Lateral flow test kits can help detected coronavirus Picture: x3 from Pixabay

AS WOKINGHAM borough families prepare for the return of the school run, the government has announced that applicable households will be able to have covid tests on a twice weekly basis.

The lateral flow tests will be available to order and collect from local sites or via workplace testing programmes.

Students at secondary school level and above will be tested three times at school before switching to twice-weekly home tests.

Primary School age children will not be tested due to low levels of covid transmission, however they will need to be tested if they show any symptoms of the virus.

The move comes as schools prepare for the return of all pupils on Monday, March 8, after two months of virtual lessons for most students.

The Government hopes that the free tests for households will help reduce the spread of coronavirus., particularly as a third of individuals with coronavirus showing no symptoms and are potentially spreading it without knowing.

The tests take up to 30 minutes to display results, so positive cases can isolate immediately. However, take-up is voluntary and not mandatory.  

The tests will be available for collection from tomorrow (Monday, March 1), but kits should be ordered from a new ordering service which will be launched shortly. The tests can be picked up once a slot has been reserved. It is expected that the collection points will be at workplace testing, local authority test sites and a website.

Health and Social Care Secretary Matt Hancock said: “Regular testing of households and childcare support bubbles of primary and secondary school children is another tool we are making available to help keep schools safe.

“We know that one in three people with Covid-19 don’t have any symptoms, so targeted, regular testing will mean more positive cases are kept out of schools and colleges.”

Anyone with symptoms of Covid-19 should book a test online or by calling 119.

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