COVID-19 testing in Cheshire West and Chester
13 January 2022While supplies of home Lateral Flow Device (LFD) test kits are currently limited across the country, symptom free residents and workers can still access on-site, rapid COVID-19 testing at Cheshire West and Chester Council’s testing centres and pop-up testing units.
These are Stanney Oaks Leisure Centre, in Ellesmere Port, the Dingle Centre, in Winsford, both open from 9am to 3pm Monday to Friday, and the two pop-up units, which, this week are at Ellesmere Port from Monday to Friday and Blacon from Wednesday to Friday. The pop-up units are open from 9am to 3.30pm and move location each week.
Following a temporary change to national testing policy, from Tuesday, 11 January, anyone who tests positive using a no-symptoms LFD test is required to self-isolate immediately without the need for a confirmatory polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test. This is because when rates of COVID-19 infection are very high, it is highly likely that a positive LFD result is a true positive.
The latest seven-day infection rate for the borough is 2,011 per 100,000 people in the seven days to 7 January. The previous peak, in January 2021, was 624 per 100,000 people.
Cllr Louise Gittins, Leader of Cheshire West and Chester Council, said:
“We are seeing the highest COVID-19 infection rates we have ever seen in the borough, as we are across the country. The numbers of people in hospital with COVID-19 is much lower than this time last year, but there are 237 patients with COVID-19 being treated in local hospitals, and this number is rising."
“I know it’s difficult to keep testing when it’s hard to get hold of home test kits, but please keep trying, use our centres and pop-up testing units and help make sure you’re not spreading COVID-19 unknowingly – give yourself peace of mind, look after each other and help ease pressure on our NHS and care services."
“It’s also so important to get your vaccine as soon as you can, whether you’re eligible for your first, second or booster dose. The difference in the numbers of people in hospital with the virus this year compared to last year really highlights the incredible impact the vaccination programme has had.”
Anyone with symptoms of the virus, including a new continuous cough, high temperature and loss or change in their sense of smell or taste, should self-isolate immediately and take a different type of test, a polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test, which is processed at a laboratory.
Anyone who tests positive on LFD, designed to test people without symptoms, will be asked to take a confirmatory PCR test if they are eligible for the £500 Test and Trace Support Payment to help them through self-isolation.
For more information about COVID-19 testing in Cheshire West and Chester visit: www.cheshirewestandchester.gov.uk/c19testing