People in Nottinghamshire are being told they should make testing for Covid-19 twice every week “part of your routine”.
Health officials are urging everyone to test themselves regularly, regardless of whether they are showing any symptoms.
Lateral flow tests can now be delivered to your door, administered at one of many testing centres across the country or purchased from one of around 200 pharmacies that offer them around Nottinghamshire.
Jonathan Gribbin, director of public health for Nottinghamshire County Council, has emphasised the importance of testing alongside the vaccination programme, which continues to be rolled out in the UK.
He said: “I want to underline that although vaccines are very effective, and although we’re really pleased that people right across Nottinghamshire have come forward to take up the offer, we must also remember that vaccines on their own may not be sufficient for us to contain and prevent a resurgence.
“So, alongside the vaccine, it’s important that we also stick with all the measures and with that, that we start to make twice-weekly testing a routine part of our lives.
“Increasingly, there are a number of different ways which people right across Nottinghamshire can get a hold of lateral flow tests which will enable them to do that for themselves at home if they wish.
“You can collect these increasingly from pharmacies in the community, there are now a couple of hundred pharmacies across the city and county where you can collect LFT kits. There are also a number of our own asymptomatic testing sites where you can collect these – you can also go online and order tests to be delivered to your home.
“But the important thing that we want to underline is that this is something that we need to incorporate into our routine and everyday life.
“And that, together with vaccines and other measures we follow, are going to be the things that keep Nottinghamshire safe in the months to come.”
Testing centres are now located at a number of sites across Nottinghamshire, in every district in the county.
Lateral flow tests, like pregnancy tests, offer people results very quickly – within 30 minutes of taking the test. They are for people who are not displaying symptoms of Covid-19.
David Johns, interim director of public health for Nottingham City Council, said: “One in three people who are infected with Covid-19 don’t have any symptoms.
“Most people catch Covid from the people they spend the most time with so getting tested is a really good way of protecting family friends, co-workers and I think it’s really important that we emphasise that message.
“Tests are available, they’re easy to access, either in pharmacies or from our testing centres, we can give you advice on how to do the swabbing, or by booking online and getting them delivered straight to your address.
“I booked mine last Friday and they came by the very next day on the Saturday – so they are quick and easily accessible.”