Coronavirus: News from our partners – Coronavirus testing: what you need to know
News from our partners Shropshire and Telford & Wrekin Sustainability Transformation Partnership (STP)
Who can get tested?
Testing for coronavirus (COVID-19) has been expanded to everyone over the age of five with symptoms. People can ask for a test if they, or a member of their household, have the recent onset of any of the following symptoms:
- a new continuous cough
- a high temperature
- a loss of, or change in, your normal sense of smell or taste (anosmia)
The test needs to be done in the first five days of having symptoms (it is better to apply for a test in the first three days if possible).
Anyone who is not an essential worker, who has symptoms of COVID-19, should use the national booking system by visiting www.nhs.uk/coronavirus. Those who do not have any access to the Internet, or who have difficulty with the digital portals, are able to ring a new 119 service to book their test.
People experiencing any of the above symptoms and their household members should self-isolate immediately. If you need medical advice about your symptoms use NHS 111 online or call NHS 111.
Testing for essential workers
Essential Workers, and members of their household, who have symptoms can use the dedicated local arrangement (by speaking to their employer) or should register for a test through the Self-Referral and Employer Portals on gov.uk.
Care homes in England can continue to register for delivery of tests for all their staff and residents, whether or not they have symptoms: gov.uk/apply-coronavirus-test-care-home.
How to get tested in Shropshire and Telford & Wrekin
Testing can either be done at home by applying for a home testing kit, or by registering for an appointment at a drive-through testing centre.
Testing is provided at drive-through testing centres, currently by appointment only, and the correct booking procedures must be followed in order to avoid being turned away.
In Shropshire and Telford & Wrekin this may be at a Mobile Testing Unit, based in a temporary location in Shropshire, or further afield, at a regionally based drive-through testing centre.
The test itself involves taking a swab of the inside of the nose and the back of the throat, using a long cotton bud. This can be done by the person themselves or by someone else. Results of the test and subsequent advice will be provided.
Victoria Rankin, Executive Lead for People for Shropshire, Telford & Wrekin Sustainability and Transformation Partnership, said:
“If you have symptoms of COVID-19 you should book a test as soon as you can, ideally in the first three days.
“Testing will help keep NHS and other public services running smoothly, allow people to return to work as quickly as possible, and help keep those who are vulnerable safe.
“The Mobile Testing Units based in temporary locations in the county have increased our testing capabilities, so we hope they will be well-used by those that need them.”
Shropshire, Telford & Wrekin Sustainability and Transformation Partnership (STP) is made up of health and care commissioners and providers. Partners include Shropshire Council, Telford & Wrekin Council, NHS Shropshire Clinical Commissioning Group, NHS Telford & Wrekin Clinical Commissioning Group, Shrewsbury and Telford Hospital NHS Trust, Robert Jones and Agnes Hunt Orthopaedic Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, Midlands Partnership NHS Foundation Trust and Shropshire Community Health NHS Trust.
Shropshire, Telford & Wrekin STP has been created to encourage health and care organisations to work more closely together to improve outcomes and care for local people, reduce pressures on services and make best use of our financial resources.
It sets out ambitious plans for transformed neighbourhood services; safe and effective hospital care; ways in which new technology can be harnessed; and how gaps in the workforce can be filled and financial resources better spent.
Shropshire, Telford & Shropshire STP is one of 44 sustainability and transformation partnerships across England.
Keep informed and sign up to our daily coronavirus email updates
Shropshire Council wants to keep you as up to date and informed as possible. To help us do this, we have developed a coronavirus update that will be sent daily at 8pm via email to anyone who has signed up to our e-bulletins.
This update includes the day’s key Shropshire Council news, and some key news from our partners, relating to coronavirus-linked issues. Please click here to sign up for the updates.
Please do encourage your family and friends to sign up to the updates too. This will help us keep everyone up to date with the rapidly-evolving crisis.