Are your staff in need of Covid-19 tests?

Increasingly, we are finding that frontline workers, including construction workers, are expected to have regular Covid-19 tests before they report to their sites or workplaces.

Only last week we were asked by a client to undertake inspections on a site in London. Their client insisted that anyone who visited the site must have received a negative Covid-19 test result in two weeks prior to their arrival.

Many firms are unsure of what they need to do so we have put together this handy guide to help their staff access testing via Covid-19 community testing. This testing is free – all it requires is their time and it could make the difference between employees and contractors being able to work or being turned away from sites and workplaces.

What is Covid-19 community testing?

This is a new locally-led testing service set up to test people who are asymptomatic, ie without Covid-19 symptoms, in Northamptonshire using lateral flow antigen testing.

The aim of testing people who do not have Covid-19 symptoms is to protect those most at risk by using rapid testing.

What is lateral flow antigen testing?

Lateral flow antigen tests are a new kind of technology that can be used to test a higher proportion of asymptomatic people. This better enables us to identify and isolate people who are more likely to spread the virus so we can break the chains of transmission.

A Lateral Flow Test (LFT) detects the presence or absence of Coronavirus by reading a swab or saliva sample which is applied to the device’s absorbent pad. The sample runs along the surface of the pad and gives a visual positive or negative result dependent on the presence of the virus.

Who is community testing for – Covid-19 tests?

Although students have returned to schools and colleges this week people are still advised to work from home and limit their trips outside.

In the meantime, frontline workers – including those working in construction, public services,  health and social care, transportation, education, childcare, essential shops, financial services, food production and processing, warehousing, packing and distribution – are being advised to get tested weekly to help reduce the spread of the virus.

Where can I get Covid-19 tests in Northamptonshire?

There are several test centres located across the county where you can receive free community testing.

There are four centres at Lodge Park Sports Centre in Corby, Danes Camp Sports and Leisure Centre in Northampton, Brackley Leisure Centre and Redwell Leisure Centre in Wellingborough.

The Corby centre is open Tuesday to Saturday from 8am to midday and from 3pm to 7pm. To book a test at the Corby centre click here

The Northampton centre is open Monday to Friday from 7.30am to 1pm and from 2.30pm to 8pm and on Saturday and Sunday from 9am to 1pm. To book a test at the Northampton centre click here

The Brackley centre is open Tuesday to Saturday from 9am to midday and from 2pm to 6pm. To book a test at the Brackley centre click here

The Wellingborough centre is open Tuesday to Saturday from 8am to midday and from 2pm to 6pm. To book a test at the Wellingborough centre click here

You do not have to provide any paperwork or fit to fly certificates for travel to access the testing. However, when you arrive at the test site you will need to register your details on the NHS Test & Trace system in order to receive your test results.

Attendees are advised against using public transport to get to the centres, if possible, in case they later test positive.

Should I visit one of these centres for community testing if I have Covid-19 symptoms?

No. These centres are only for people without symptoms. If you have symptoms you should book a PCR Covid Test.

Are there other ways for businesses to access testing?

Businesses can also order Covid-19 Rapid Lateral Flow tests for their employees directly from the Government using an online ordering portal. Firms can register to order tests for their employees if:

  • their business is registered in England
  • they employ 50 people or more
  • their employees cannot work from home.

You must register on or before 31 March 2021 to access these tests here

If you need health and safety advice visit https://acornhealthandsafety.co.uk/ or contact us at info@acornhealthandsafety.co.uk or on 01604 930380.

Need help with Health and Safety? Request a call back!

Request a call back from one of our expert Health and Safety Consultants who can help you whatever your health and safety, CDM or fire risk needs.

More Health and Safety Articles & News

Help With Health And Safety

How nudge theory can help with health and safety

By Neil Munro | 22nd July 2019

A behavioural nudge is a psychological technique used by organisations to encourage good decisions in various scenarios. Essentially, behavioural nudges can guide employees towards a favourable behaviour as opposed to a dangerous one.   Originally conceived by American economist, Richard Thaler, nudge theory has also been used by governments to change the status quo with …

Read moreHow nudge theory can help with health and safety

Develop Safe Systems Of Work

How to develop Safe Systems of Work and why you need them

By Neil Munro | 6th June 2019

Safe Systems of Work (SSoWs) are designed to protect employees where workplace risks cannot be fully eliminated – a legal obligation for employers under the Health and Safety at Work Act, 1974. SSoWs are a fundamental element of health and safety for many businesses. They recognise that risks do exist in certain tasks, and define …

Read moreHow to develop Safe Systems of Work and why you need them

Managing Health And Safety

5 easy steps for smaller businesses in managing health and safety

By Neil Munro | 7th May 2019

Managing health and safety can be daunting for smaller businesses with limited resources, but by implementing a few health and safety basics you can get to grips with your obligations as an employer and comply with the regulations. But where do you start with health and safety as a smaller organisation? Here are a few …

Read more5 easy steps for smaller businesses in managing health and safety

Fire Risk Assessments

Fire Risk Assessment – not just another tick box exercise

By Neil Munro | 29th April 2019

A fire risk assessment plays a fundamental role in our national health and safety regime. A fire rsik assessment is a mandatory requirement for commercial, industrial, and all other non-domestic premises. When used correctly a fire risk assessment can safeguard our workforces and help employers, landlords, and owners of non-residential buildings to meet their legal …

Read moreFire Risk Assessment – not just another tick box exercise

Cdm Consultants

Are you a duty holder under CDM 2015? Here’s what you need to do

By Neil Munro | 17th April 2019

The UK Construction (Design & Management) regime was introduced to improve health and safety during construction projects. The latest version of the legislation, which took effect in 2015, brought in some changes, and if you’re a duty holder under CDM it’s important to understand your role within a project. Failing to comply with CDM regulations …

Read moreAre you a duty holder under CDM 2015? Here’s what you need to do