Council advises residents to book a COVID-19 test for a wider range of symptoms

17 February 2021

Residents in Cheshire West and Chester are being advised to consider booking a COVID-19 test if they have symptoms from a broader list than the 'classic' three.

Cheshire West and Chester Council is taking an extended approach to testing following acknowledgement by leading international clinical authorities that many people who have a the infection display symptoms which are different from fever, new continuous cough, and loss or change in sense of taste or smell.

The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in the United States, the World Health Organization (WHO), the UK SIREN study and the Office of National Statistics (ONS) Coronavirus (COVID-19) Infection Survey have identified a range of additional symptoms of COVID-19 infection.

These include: shortness of breath, muscle or body aches, fatigue, sore throat, headache, nasal congestion or runny nose, diarrhoea, nausea or vomiting. However, it is important to remember that these are very common symptoms, and most people who have these symptoms will not have COVID-19.

Ian Ashworth, Director of Public Health at Cheshire West and Chester Council, said: "Residents are encouraged to access testing at a Local Testing Site or Mobile Testing Unit if they display any of these additional symptoms.

"This is in line with approaches adopted by other councils in the north west in recent weeks, which are all working to address the rise in new variants of the virus and enhancing efforts to tackle this pandemic. It will maximise the use of symptomatic testing centres to protect the health of the borough's residents."

Cllr Louise Gittins, Leader of Cheshire West and Chester Council, said: "Getting a test if you have one of the wider range of symptoms is not a cause for alarm - it is simply a precautionary measure to help stop the spread of COVID-19.

"It's another really important way we can all play our part in the fight against this virus."

The Council's approach is as follows:
  • Anyone with one of the three main symptoms - a new and continuous cough, a high temperature or a loss or change in your sense of smell or taste - should self-isolate immediately and book a test at: nhs.uk/coronavirus or by calling: 119.
  • Anyone with the following symptoms should consider also booking a test: shortness of breath, muscle or body aches, fatigue, sore throat, headache, nasal congestion or runny nose, diarrhoea, nausea or vomiting. Book a test at: nhs.uk/coronavirus or by calling: 119. When booking choose the option that the local council has asked you to get a test. If you only have these symptoms, you do not need to self-isolate unless you test positive for COVID-19.
  • If you do not have symptoms but do have to go out of your home to work or look after someone, you can access rapid and regular COVID-19 testing at an asymptomatic testing site.

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