Rapid Test Device For Covid-19 Virus Close-up

MAJOR MILESTONE: END OF FREE COVID TESTING TODAY MARKS BIG STEP FORWARD IN PANDEMIC

Free COVID-19 testing has officially come to an end today (Friday) with Islanders encouraged to start treating the coronavirus just like any other respiratory infection.

Health Secretary Sajid Javid has said that the pandemic has now entered a new phase as the Government withdraws funding for free lateral flow tests for all – and closes the PCR testing facility at Newclose Cricket Ground.

The removal of free LFTs will, in theory, reduce the number of people off work and school as testing out of habit will end now there is a direct cost attached.

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Official guidance from the Government says that people should ‘try’ to avoid contact with other people if they have COVID symptoms until they ‘feel better’. If someone tests positive for COVID then they should stay home for just 5 days, but there is no legal requirement to do so.

At the start of the pandemic 1Leisure Medina became the Island’s first test centre in April 2020, initially opening for NHS staff only on 25th April 2020, before becoming a permanent fixture for the Island community. In August 2020 the test centre moved to Newclose Cricket Ground where it has remained until today.

Darren Cattell, Chief Executive of the Isle of Wight NHS Trust, has said:

“I would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone who has been involved with the Island’s COVID-19 test centre, including NHS staff, council and public health colleagues, military personnel and volunteers. As with our frontline NHS heroes, these individuals have worked tirelessly to support our community and they have been an integral part of our response to COVID-19 over the last 2 years. Thank you each and every one of you”.

Free lateral flow tests are still available for a small number of people who are asymptomatic (not showing symptoms) including:

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• NHS staff who are patient-facing
• Hospice staff
• Adult social care staff  – such as those working in care homes or home carers
• A limited number of care home visitors who provide personal care to residents
• HM Prison staff in some prisons
• Staff in high-risk domestic abuse refuses and homelessness settings

If there is a confirmed outbreak of COVID-19, then care home staff and residents will be provided with asymptomatic lateral flow tests.

Free testing will also be provided to symptomatic patients in hospitals where a PCR test is required for their care and to provide access to treatments. Patients will also be tested before being discharged from hospital into care homes, hospices and refuges.

The Government says that although hospitalisations have been rising, over 55% of those in hospitals with COVID-19 were actually admitted for something completely different. Officials have also said that free twice-weekly testing for NHS staff will also come to an end when the latest wave comes to an end – whenever that may be.

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The views/opinions expressed in these comments are solely those of the author and do not represent those of Island Echo. House rules on commenting must be followed at all times.
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Someone
Someone
4 months ago

Let’s celebrate to this! When covid first started we was scared we’d never return to normal and that it will always control our lives forever, but some had faith and it worked! Now all we need is Boris put in prison lol. Silly bastard how dare he party before the royal funeral!

mr george french
mr george french
Reply to  Someone
4 months ago

HI THERE SOMEONE YOU ARE BETTER OFF IN PRISON CLOWN IF YOU THINK THIS IS A BIG STEP FORWARD TELL THAT TOO THE PEOPLE IN ST MARYS COVID WARD DYING

June
June
4 months ago

Big step or BIG mistake? Time will tell.

Quaesetor
Quaesetor
4 months ago

Good luck everyone. The Zoe App from Kings College London reports 15,000+ infections on the IOW.
Not sure it it’s really a ‘big step forward’.

Sunshine
Sunshine
4 months ago

This is all a big mistake. Just wait and see and watch the numbers spike even further.
Now the test kit has to be paid for, many people won’t bother testing and will carry on regardless, infecting many.

mr george french
mr george french
Reply to  Sunshine
4 months ago

YOU ARE SO RIGHT SUNSHINE WAIT TILL THE CASES GO THROUGH THE ROOF THEN SEE IF THIS IDIOT OF HEALTH SEC THINKS IS A BIG STEP FORWARD

Tyler
Tyler
Reply to  Sunshine
4 months ago

The numbers won’t go up if no one buys the tests!

Trueblue
Trueblue
4 months ago

Good, don’t have to drive past Newclose, & be reminded of this farce anymore!

Fedup
Fedup
4 months ago

Ask the NHS staff at St Mary’s what they 5hink.of Billy Bunter and his chums plan? It’s going to come back and bite him in his ample arse.. But then anything to district Joe Public from the fact “He Lied and then Lied some more” we are led by the king without any clothes, when is somebody going to be bold enough to tell him?

Hammer
Hammer
4 months ago

Despite taking all of the precautions religiously and hardly socialising for the past two years both myself and my wife have just got over covid. The only way we could have contracted it was from one of the multitude who thinks it’s all over and stopped bothering. Even though we will eventually have to live with this all the experts are saying that we should still be wearing masks in shops and crowded places and that we are on the verge of a covid explosion that will dwarf the previous two years pandemic. Wake up and smell the coffee folks. Wear those masks and think of others rather than yourselves.

Snowhite
Snowhite
4 months ago

Well all I can say reading some of these comments as I’ve said from the beginning, unless the fuc*wits who write this rubbish are affected as my family have been by COVID they’ll never understand!

 

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