Posted: Tue 9th Jun 2020

Regional COVID-19 test centre set to open in Deeside ‘over the coming days’

News and Info from Deeside, Flintshire, North Wales
This article is old - Published: Tuesday, Jun 9th, 2020


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A  drive-through regional coronavirus testing site will open in Deeside “’over the coming days” the UK Government has confirmed. 

Delyn MP Rob Roberts shared a letter from health minister Lord Bethell outlining the plan for the testing centre next to the Toyota engine plant at Deeside Industrial Estate.

Mr Roberts wrote to Secretary of State for Health and Social Care Matt Hancock on June 5 calling for a testing centre in North East Wales

In his letter, the Delyn MP said: “My constituents are attempting to book tests via the online portal which is finally working in Wales, sadly lagging somewhat behind the rest of the UK, however when they get to their options for testing, the nearest Welsh site for them is in Llandudno, around 30 miles away from the centre of my constituency.

This is a significant challenge for constituents who might not have ready access to personal transport or are extremely busy key workers.

The Llandudno site is also listed as “Over 16’s only”, which is problematic for families and not particularly flexible.

There are also options given across the border in England, but these are limited and a significant distance for my constituents.

Can urgent work be conducted to examine where a new testing site for North East Wales can be created? Having a new centre in Delyn or the wider the Flintshire area will have a major impact on our ability to tackle the virus in North East Wales.”

Remarkably, just three days later, Lord Bethell wrote back to the Delyn MP confirming a new testing site was being opened in Deeside, he said: “I am writing to update you on the provision of Coronavirus testing in Deeside and the surrounding areas.

It is vital that people have access to testing so that they know whether they, or members of that household, have coronavirus.

This enables them to take steps to look after themselves, protect others and know if they are fit to return to work.

In turn, this helps reduce the spread of the virus.

I wanted to write to you to confirm that we are opening a Regional Test Site (RTS) at the Deeside Toyota Plant, over the coming days.

The site will be a hybrid site, offering both assisted and self-administered tests.

I hope this site will make it easier for many people in Deeside and the surrounding areas to access testing.

This is in addition to home tests which can be booked through the government’s online portal, in the same way as slots for RTSs and are an increasingly important part of our testing strategy.

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. ”

 

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