A walk-through coronavirus testing facility has opened at in Darlaston, as part of the Government’s UK-wide drive to improve the accessibility of coronavirus testing for communities.
The centre, situated at Darlaston Community Association Sports and Social Centre, means that anyone with coronavirus symptoms, however mild, can get a free swab test that takes less than a minute.
Tests should be booked or ordered as soon as symptoms begin at nhs.uk/coronavirus or by calling 119 and you can expect your result the next day.
The site is easily accessible without a car. Those being tested will be required to follow public health measures, including social distancing, not travelling by taxi or public transport, practising good personal hygiene and wearing a face covering throughout (including travelling to and from the testing centre).
Anyone attending an appointment at a walk-through testing will be provided with guidance on getting to and from the test site safely.
Testing at the new site started last week, with more appointments available each day. Testing is available for everyone, with additional support for vulnerable groups and people with disabilities.
The site is part of the largest network of diagnostic testing facilities created in British history, including 74 drive-through sites, 81 walk-through sites, 236 mobile units, home testing and satellite kits and five laboratories.
Anyone testing positive for the virus in England will be contacted by NHS Test and Trace to help them track their contacts. This will help people to identify who they may have been in close contact with, protecting others from further transmission.
Close contacts of those testing positive will also hear from NHS Test and Trace, advising them to stay at home for 14 days to prevent them from unknowingly spreading the virus. They will be advised to also book at test if they develop symptoms. Health Minister Lord Bethell said:
“Testing is proving an effective way to contain the virus so we are scaling testing capacity and walk-through centres to make it even easier for everyone to get a free coronavirus test.
“Our NHS Test and Trace service will contact you if you test positive or if you have been in close contact with someone who has the virus.
”I urge anyone with symptoms to book a test today, and anyone contacted by NHS Test and Trace to follow their advice to protect those around them from the virus.”
The testing centre is being operated in partnership with Serco, and will offer self-administered tests.