Changes to locations of community testing site
Over the past few months, Public Health Dorset and Dorset Council have worked hard with to set up community testing across the Dorset Council area.
Free twice-weekly lateral flow device (LFD) testing is available to Dorset Council area residents over the age of 16 who show no symptoms of COVID-19. Children aged 12-15 can access assisted testing if supervised by a parent or guardian.
LFD testing was first introduced for local authority staff and those in the community who couldn’t work from home. The government announced free asymptomatic testing was available to everyone from 9 April so Dorset’s LFD test sites are now open access.
Asymptomatic testing means that you show no signs of COVID-19 symptoms.
In Dorset LFD tests are available in a variety of ways:
- assisted on-site tests at one of Dorset’s community testing sites
- home test collection from Dorset’s participating community testing sites
- home test collection from local participating pharmacies
- free home delivery service via the government website portal or telephoning 119.
The introduction of home testing and greater accessibility to testing has resulted in fewer people testing on-site.
We have therefore made some changes to the provision in the Dorset Council area which still makes free asymptomatic LFD testing widely available.
The changes to the asymptomatic testing sites in Dorset Council area are:
- From Monday 17 May, Wimborne Town Football Club site will no longer be available every day. There will be a mobile pop up (van) in the football club’s car park on a Monday and Thursday for anyone wanting to have an assisted test or pick up LFD home test kits
- From Monday 7 June, the Swanage and Wareham Rugby Club site will no longer be available every day. There will be a pop up in the rugby club’s car park two half days a week on Tuesday and Friday afternoons from Tuesday 8 June
- The Co-op car park in Swanage, an area previously not covered will be visited by a pop up two half days a week on Tuesday and Friday mornings from Tuesday 18 May
- From Monday 7 June, the Sherborne Rugby Club site will no longer be available every day. There will be a pop up in the rugby club’s car park two half days a week on Wednesday mornings and Saturday afternoons from Wednesday 9 June
- The village hall car park in Cerne Abbas, an area previously not covered will be visited by a pop up two half days a week on Wednesday afternoon and Saturday morning from Wednesday 19 May. This offers new testing provision in mid Dorset and a collection point where there are no pharmacies or supermarkets for collecting home test kits
- The Square in Beaminster, an area previously not covered will be visited by a pop up two half days a week on Wednesday and Saturday mornings from Wednesday 19 May.
- Charmouth Road Car Park in Lyme Regis, an area previously not covered will be visited by a pop up two half days a week on Wednesday and Saturday afternoons from Wednesday 19 May.
- Weymouth Park and Ride site will remain open but the number of testing bays will reduce to four.
All locations apart from mid Dorset also have local pharmacies which offer collection of free LFD home test kits.
Cllr Laura Miller, Dorset Council’s Portfolio Holder for Adult Social Care and Health said: “It’s great to see more coverage of asymptomatic testing in the county for those residents who show no symptoms of COVID-19. I would really urge people to keep testing regularly.
“It’s great so many people are being vaccinated but the vaccine alone will not stop the spread of COVID-19. We need to keep following all government measures.
“We will continue to work closely with our local and national partners to provide community testing where needed.”
For more information about asymptomatic testing visit www.publichealthdorset.org.uk/your-health/protecting-your-health/dorset-rapid-community-testing.aspx
It is really important that if anyone shows symptoms of COVID-19: a high temperature, a new persistent cough or a change or loss of sense of taste or smell that they and their household self-isolates immediately and book a PCR test via the national portal www.gov.uk/get-coronavirus-test or calling 119. Everyone must self-isolate until a test result is received.