A new Government pilot to evaluate the effectiveness of testing for people without symptoms of the virus who work in high-contact professions will begin today.
This will include a select group of staff such as taxi drivers, cleaners, and retail assistants, to see if there is demand for testing amongst these kinds of workers, and how they are affected by the virus.
This targeted, asymptomatic swab testing will take place as part of a close partnership with government, local authorities and a number of employers, with tens of thousands of tests offered to selected groups.
Partners involved in the trial include Addison Lee, BT, Mitie and Boots UK, as well as testing of groups identified by local authorities in Bradford, Newham, Brent and Oldham as being more vulnerable to the virus.
Simon Venn, Chief Government & Strategy Officer, Mitie:“We are very proud to be working closely with the government to help turn the tide on this pandemic. This trial is of paramount importance to understanding more about the spread of Covid-19. Our frontline heroes have worked tirelessly to keep the UK running throughout the pandemic and any initiatives which promote their health and safety are to be commended.”
Each business will receive thousands of tests for staff via home test delivery or a mobile testing unit, while local authorities will use capacity by booking in specific times for asymptomatic testing at their walk-through local test sites.
Those who test positive through targeted asymptomatic testing will need to self-isolate as normal and follow national guidance. Positive results will be shared with NHS Test and Trace, in order to identify recent contacts, advise them to self-isolate and prevent further transmission of the virus.