Targeted testing plans drawn up in the fight against COVID-19 infections in Cheshire West and Chester
3 December 2020Plans are being drawn up to offer COVID-19 tests to people without symptoms of the virus after Cheshire West and Chester was chosen as a pilot borough.
Currently, only people with symptoms can access a test, but COVID-19 can still be spread if someone does not have symptoms.
The pilot aims to identify those asymptomatic cases through serial testing, which will stop people from spreading the disease unknowingly.
Plans for the pilot are being developed by Cheshire West and Chester Council and will focus on particular key groups, unlike the mass universal testing approach piloted in Liverpool.
Cllr Louise Gittins, Leader of Cheshire West and Chester Council, said: “Our priority groups for this new type of testing are still being refined, but are likely to include people who may get infected more easily, people who could pass the virus on to those more vulnerable to the disease and people who need to return to work for the good of the community.
“This could include groups like day centre staff and informal carers, as well as parts of the emergency services.
“Areas with Tier 3 restrictions will be offered more extensive mass testing, with support from the military, but as a Tier 2 area Cheshire will develop a more targeted approach.
“This type of testing has an important part to play in the fight against COVID-19 and we are pleased to be chosen as one of 67 pilot boroughs in the country.”
More details about the pilot will be released as soon as possible.
In the meantime, anyone who develops symptoms of COVID-19, which include a new continuous cough, a high temperature or a loss or change in your sense of taste or smell, should self-isolate immediately and ring: 119 or visit: nhs.uk/coronavirus to book a test.