Twice weekly testing now available to everyone in Blackpool

Posted on Thursday 15th April 2021


Following the government’s announcement that everyone in England can now access twice weekly home testing for coronavirus, residents are being encouraged to collect test kits from Blackpool testing sites and participating pharmacies, or order online. 


On 9 April, universal testing was rolled out across the country to allow anybody to access free rapid COVID-19 tests, which give a result in 30 minutes. Previously free rapid tests were only available for high-risk groups such as NHS staff and care home workers, as well as those who needed to leave home to work, school children and their families. 


Pharmacies across Blackpool have signed up to participate as collection points for residents to pick up home test kits. Community testing sites in Blackpool will also be handing out kits during their opening hours at four different locations: The Oracle, Salvation Army, Whiteholme Community Centre and Hounds Hill Shopping Centre (which opened in line with the re-opening of non-essential retail on 12 April). 


So far over 120,000 positive cases have been identified through rapid testing nationally, which may not otherwise have been identified. 


Dr Arif Rajpura, Director of Public Health at Blackpool Council, said: 


“Alongside the national vaccine rollout, regular symptom-free testing is as an essential tool in easing restrictions safely and returning to a more normal way of life.  


“Evidence tells us that around 1 in 3 with COVID-19 do not experience any symptoms and could spread the virus without knowing they have it. Finding positive cases and getting them to isolate sooner can limit the spread and prevent outbreaks which is so important as we continue in the roadmap. 


“Regular testing is also vital to limit the spread of new COVID-19 variants. Variants are being detected faster than ever before through advances in testing so more people doing regular testing means an increased ability to identify these new variants and keep them under control. 


“The vaccination rollout has been a huge success story and the vaccine gives us hope for longer term protection from the virus, but we need to remember that it will be some months before all adults have been offered the vaccine. 


“We want to make it as easy as possible for everyone in Blackpool to access these free rapid tests and make testing a part of their normal routine because it is going to be crucial in us getting back to some normality, whilst still protecting each other.” 





Posted on Thursday 15th April 2021

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