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LIVERPOOL’s mass testing for Covid-19 begins today for anyone living or working in the city who are NOT displaying symptoms of the disease.

With assistance from the military, hundreds of thousands of tests will be made available over the 10-day trial period which will include:

  • Lateral Flow Test (LFT) – this is a simple self-swab test which will give results in under an hour.
  • Existing swab tests – these mouth and nose swabs will supply results within 48 to 72 hours.

Everyone in the city is being asked to get tested, but there is specific emphasis in asking health and care workers, other emergency services and key workers, school staff and pupils, university staff and students to come forward.

More centres will be opened in the coming days.

Positive results from tests will be collected by NHS Test and Trace and published as part of the daily case numbers, including how many positive cases are detected with this new method of testing.

Anyone arriving for a test should bring a mobile phone with them.

Those who tests positive must self-isolate along with their household immediately and their contacts will be traced.

Those who test negative will need to continue to follow all national guidance.

In addition, anyone testing positive via the lateral flow testing may be asked to take a second confirmatory PCR test. These more advanced tests will help identify infectious individuals who are not displaying symptoms and help far more positive cases so they can self-isolate and prevent the virus from spreading, in a first step towards rolling out mass testing more widely across the UK.

Liverpool Mayor Joe Anderson said: “Liverpool has always led the way on public health. This is an incredible opportunity to turbo charge our efforts to reduce coronavirus in the city.

“We are excited to be leading on this project, supported by the Department of Health and Social Care. Let’s all get tested, for our families, our mates, our Liverpool and set an example to the country and the world.”

The city’s director of public health, Matt Ashton, said: “This exciting mass testing programme simply means asking everyone to volunteer to be tested, and for those who test positive to self-isolate straight away and prevent others from getting it.

“This is a pilot scheme and we won’t get everything right, but it is a huge chance to drive down transmission rates and get life back to normal more quickly.”

Testing slots can be booked via www.gov.uk/testliverpool – that will be operational later this evening – or using the NHS Covid-19 App.

THE first six Covid-19 test centres will open their doors and will be open until 7pm:

  • Lifestyles Alsop Fitness Centre
  • Exhibition Centre Liverpool
  • Lifestyles Ellergreen
  • Lifestyles Park Road
  • Liverpool Tennis Centre
  • Lifestyle Garston

Anyone displaying Covid-19 symptoms can still attend any of the existing centres or a mobile testing unit which can be booked via www.gov.uk/coronavirus

Click here for FAQs about the mass testing programme.