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Coronavirus Covid-19 test

Changes to Covid-19 testing criteria

by Gemma Melling

From Monday, 18 May, anyone in England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland who is displaying Coronavirus symptoms is eligible to book a test to find out if they have the virus.

So far, over 1.8 million have been tested for Coronavirus in the UK.

People can register for a test at www.nhs.uk/coronavirus after checking their symptoms. You will be allocated the next available appointment at your nearest test centre, which may be one of the regional test sites (including Haydock Park Racecourse) or one of the mobile test sites which may be closer to home or if you are unable to get to one of the drive-through test centres, you can request a home testing kit (subject to availability). Details are available at www.nhs.uk/coronavirus.

The four UK Chief Medical Officers have also announced that anosmia – the loss or a change in your normal sense of smell or taste – has been added as a symptom of COVID-19.

This means that individuals need to self-isolate immediately – and will be eligible for a test – if they have a new continuous cough, or they have a high temperature, or they feel a loss or changed sense of normal smell or taste. All members of their household must also self-isolate according to current guidelines, unless the symptomatic individual receives a negative test result.

Cllr Sean Donnelly, Cabinet Member for Health and Social Care, said “We all need to look after ourselves as well as looking after those around us, so if you are displaying any of the symptoms, it’s really important that you get tested. It’s quick and easy to do and your test results will be back in a matter of days.