One in 3 people with Covid-19 do not have any symptoms, but could spread the virus to family, friends or colleagues without knowing they have it. Rapid testing quickly identifies any infections and helps to prevent further spread by breaking the chain of transmission.
Free rapid testing is currently widely available across the city at community testing sites, in workplaces and at home for secondary and college students.
From today (9 April) access to testing is being expanded further, so that most people over the age of 18 can collect a home test kit (exemptions apply ).
Collection points are being increased, with local pharmacies offering a ‘pharmacy collect’ service where people will be able to go to participating pharmacies and pick up a free box of tests to use at home.
Additionally, free home testing kits will be available for collection from The Hub at Ashmore Park, The Civic Centre and Pendeford Library. From Tuesday (13 April) these will also be available for collection from the mobile testing unit.
Wolverhampton’s Director of Public Health, John Denley, said: “Getting into the habit of twice weekly testing as part of our everyday lives will help us all play our part and do what we can to keep each other safe.
“Regular testing helps us to monitor any spread of the infection, so it is important that all home test results are recorded, even if they are negative.”
“These tests are easy to use and give results in under an hour, so anyone who tests positive can self isolate immediately, get a follow-up PCR test and avoid passing the virus on to others.”
Free rapid testing can also be accessed through the mobile testing unit, which is currently at Phoenix Park in Blakenhall (moving to Merridale next week), or at the following locations:
- The Civic Centre, St Peter's Square, Monday to Friday, 8am to 7pm and Saturday and Sunday, 10am to 6pm
- The Jamia Masjid Bilal, Newhampton Road West, 10am to 7pm daily
- Pendeford Library, Monday to Friday, 7am to 6pm, and Saturday and Sunday, 10am to 6pm
- The Hub at Ashmore Park, Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday, 10am to 6pm
- St Joseph’s Church, Willenhall Road, Monday to Friday, 2pm to 6pm
Full details of local pharmacies offering the Pharmacy Collect service, along with other locations in the city where home test kits can be collected from, can be found on the NHS website.
People can collect up to 2 boxes – containing a total of 14 kits – at a time. The kits contain step by step instructions enabling people to complete their test and report their results from the comfort of home.
People who cannot access free rapid testing through other routes can order a box of tests online at GOV.UK or through NHS 119, which will be delivered to their home.
LFT tests are not available for people with coronavirus symptoms. Anyone with symptoms, including high temperature, a new or continuous cough, or a loss or taste or smell, should book a test online at NHS or by calling 119.
Recent analysis shows that for everyone 1,000 lateral flow tests carried out, there is less than one false positive result. LFTs identify cases with high levels of the virus and are effective in finding people who do not have symptoms but are likely to transmit the disease.
Latest figures show there were 44 new cases of Covid-19 per 100,000 people in Wolverhampton over the 7 days to 6 April. That means 116 people in the city tested positive for the virus in that 7 day period although the true number of new cases will likely be higher.