Anyone, irrespective of age, should be tested if they have symptoms of Covid-19 – such as a high temperature, a new, continuous cough, or a loss or change to your sense of smell or taste.
Testing will usually be offered at home or at a drive-through test centre. The test is most effective within one to three days of symptoms developing, and should be carried out in the first five days. For more information, and to apply for a test, please go to GOV.UK. If you do not have access to the internet, please call 119. All appointments must be booked in advance.
The Mobile Testing Unit in Wolverhampton is one of a number travelling across the country to areas where there is high demand for tests. Mobile units are only in a location for a few days. They have an integrated one-way system that allows people with an appointment to attend for either walk-in or drive through testing.
Councillor Jasbir Jaspal, the City of Wolverhampton Council's Cabinet Member for Public Health and Wellbeing, said: "Testing is one of the most important interventions that will enable the effective management of the coronavirus pandemic.
“The message is clear, if you or a member of your household is showing symptoms of coronavirus, please book a test. This will confirm whether or not you or someone you live with has the infection, and enable you to get the advice you need to manage your situation. If you don't have symptoms of coronavirus, you cannot have the test."
The test involves taking a swab of the inside of the nose and the back of the throat, using a long cotton bud. Please note, the test is not suitable for children under the age of five.
Anyone in Wolverhampton who tests positive for Covid-19 will be contacted by NHS Test and Trace and will need to share information about people that have been close contacts recently.
These could include household members or other people they have been in direct contact with, or anyone they have been within two metres of for more than 15 minutes.
Those identified as close contacts of someone who has had a positive test must stay at home for 14 days, even if they do not have symptoms, in order to stop unwittingly spreading the virus.
If those close contacts develop symptoms, they should book a test. If they test positive, they must continue to stay at home for seven days or until their symptoms have passed. If they test negative, they must continue and complete the 14-day isolation period.
Members of their household will not have to stay at home unless the person identified develops symptoms, at which point they must also self-isolate for 14 days to avoid potentially spreading the virus.
Meanwhile residents are reminded they must continue to follow social distancing guidelines to prevent the spread of coronavirus. Everyone must:
- stay at home as much as possible
- work from home if you can
- limit contact with other people
- keep your distance if you go out
- wash your hands regularly
- stay at home and self-isolate if you or anyone in your household has symptoms of coronavirus
Separate guidance remains in place for those considered extremely vulnerable, or who are shielding. People should continue to follow the advice they have previously received from medical professionals.
The latest information and guidance around coronavirus is available at GOV.UK and on the council’s own coronavirus pages at Coronavirus advice and information. There’s lots of advice on how people can protect themselves and their families from coronavirus from the NHS.
The council’s Stay Safe, Be Kind campaign offers clear and simple advice about how people can help themselves, and how they can support others who may be particularly vulnerable at this time. For more information, please visit Stay Safe, Be Kind.