Lateral flow testing sites are now within easy reach of many people in the area.
The new testing sites went live on Monday. Tests are open to all residents, but they must be pre-booked. No walk-in appointments will be available.
Lateral flow tests are designed to deliver targeted and focused, rapid testing for people without typical symptoms of covid-19 but who may still be carrying the virus, undetected.
The test does not require laboratory processing and takes 30 minutes to produce a result. The result is then sent to the individual via email and SMS confirmation within 45-60 minutes.
Regular testing of people without symptoms is important to help stop the virus spreading and protects your loved ones.
Lateral flow testing is now on offer from:
New Life Church, Danesford Community Centre, West Road, Congleton; and Wesley Centre, Wesley Avenue, Sandbach.
Other venues are Middlewich Community Church, Brooks Lane, and Macclesfield Community Centre on Duke Street.
Testing is also available at selected pharmacies across Cheshire East. Residents can check for a participating pharmacy near them online at cheshireeast.zipporah.co.uk/lft.bookings
Tests at both the asymptomatic testing sites and pharmacies are available on selected days of the week and must be booked in advanced using the online booking facility at cheshireeast.zipporah.co.uk/lft.bookings. People struggling to book online can call the Cheshire East Council contact tracing team on 0300 123 5032.
Government guidance has been issued to advise that households and bubbles of pupils, students and staff of schools and colleges should get tested twice-weekly. This also includes the wider school community including bus drivers and after-school club leaders.
People within this category can collect lateral flow testing kits from either of the council’s two local testing sites from 1.30-7pm. These two sites are at Crewe’s Chester Street Car Park (CW1 2ER) and Macclesfield, Commercial Road (SK10 2QJ).
If people within this category cannot visit a testing site to collect kits, they can order kits online via gov.uk/order-coronavirus-rapid-lateral-flow-tests
A positive result from a home testing kit requires a second test to confirm the positive result. This must be a traditional covid-19 test offered at the two testing sites in Crewe or Macclesfield, or a postal one ordered online.
Although this is an inconvenience, it doesn’t affect the 10-day isolation start date, which will commence after the lateral flow positive result itself.
This is not the case for a positive result from lateral flow tests carried out in a pharmacy or at an asymptomatic testing site. No confirmatory test is needed, and self-isolation must start immediately upon receiving the results.
Dr Matt Tyrer, director of public health for Cheshire East Council, said: “These new testing sites will enable us to deliver an effective screening programme to identify people who are asymptomatic but are unknowingly carrying the covid-19 virus.
“The test is quick to take and provides rapid results in just 30 minutes. This means that when a negative result is received, that person can go about their normal day, within the current level of restrictions, and not have to isolate while waiting for results.”