Regional Coronavirus testing centre opening in Deeside today
A regional drive through COVID-19 testing centre has opened in Deeside today.
Around 14 canopies have been erected and lanes conned off on a large piece of land next to Toyota’s engine manufacturing plant at Deeside Industrial Estate.
Like similar centres in other parts of the UK, people who need to be tested will be able to access it once they have been directed by prior arrangement and appointment only.
Drive through testing centres are designed to make it easy for people who have access to their own car to have the test simply and quickly, without even needing to exit their vehicle.
It also mitigates the risk of people who may be infected with the virus from attending a hospital or health centre for the test and then passing it to patients.
People who have an appointment to use it will be invited to drive there and will have swabs taken by staff in protective clothing while they remain in their vehicle.
The Deeside testing centre is being operated in partnership with Mitie, volunteers from high street chemist Boots will assist with the running of the site.
The site will offer assisted and self-administered tests, those tested will receive their results within a few days.
Professor John Newton, National Coordinator for the UK Coronavirus Testing Strategy, said: “This is another opportunity to make testing easily available to anyone who needs it.
Sites like this allow people who develop symptoms to quickly get a test and find out whether they need to stay at home with their household or can safely return to work or more normal life.
This whole programme has been a great example of collaboration between industries and businesses with the public sector to build the capability needed to protect the population from coronavirus.”
Anyone experiencing a new, continuous cough, a high temperature, or a loss of or change in their normal sense of smell or taste, should book a test at nhs.uk/coronavirus or by calling 119 to find out if they currently have coronavirus.
Anyone testing positive for the virus 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.
Welsh Government Health Minister, Vaughan Gething said: “The new Deeside facility will be a further boost to our testing capacity in Wales.
Anyone experiencing COVID-19 symptoms in Wales, from members of the public to critical workers, can book a test at a local drive-through centre or order a home testing kit.
Scaling up testing forms an important part of our Test, Trace, Protect strategy which will help us ease lockdown measures, so I welcome this new facility and the convenient access to testing it will provide for those living in north east Wales.”
UK health minister Lord Bethell said he hoped the new site “will make it easier for many people in Deeside and the surrounding areas to access testing.”
He added: “Before selecting Deeside Toyota Plant, we have engaged with local stakeholders to narrow down the location and identify a suitable site.
This includes the local authority and NHS stakeholders.
In order to reach a decision, we have considered which site is most suitable for safely testing as many people as possible and how long it is available for. ”
Tim Freeman, Deputy Managing Director of Toyota Manufacturing UK Ltd “Toyota are very pleased to support our local community in making this land available to the Testing programme.
This centre will ensure that people in both the North West and Wales can access a local facility more easily to help combat the spread of Covid.”
[Photo: Darren Whiteley]
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