The Community Lateral Flow Device (LFD) testing centre at the University of Northampton will no longer be open for use by the general public from Monday 8 March.
Students with a practical element to their course and staff that are required on campus are set to return to the University campus next week, so the Public Health team at Northamptonshire County Council have made the decision to return the site to sole use by the University students and staff.
The University of Northampton testing site was the first LFD site to be set up in the county. Having rolled out LFD testing for students and staff previously, the Public Health team at Northamptonshire County Council worked alongside the University to adapt the existing provision for use by those who have to attend work.
A second LFD Community testing site was launched in Northampton on 15 February at Danes Camp Leisure Centre, providing further access to testing to the residents of Northampton borough. The location of this site provides slightly easier access for those attending work in the business parks, around the south on Northampton, where a high number of employees are having to attend work.
Lateral Flow Device testing is otherwise known as rapid testing, and is used in people who do not have symptoms of COVID-19. The aim is to identify the one in three people who may be infectious without being aware, in order to reduce spread of the virus. Rapid testing enables swift action to be taken to protect colleagues and family members of those who test positive with COVID-19 and to reduce any onward risk of transmission.
Dr Rhosyn Harris, Consultant in Public Health at Northamptonshire County Council said:
The team at the University of Northampton have provided us with an excellent community testing resource during the winter period. Working in partnership with the University enabled us to roll out swift community testing, as the venue was already set up and staff were already trained.
The University has been asked by Government to return to face-to-face teaching for students with a practical element to their course that cannot be taught remotely from Monday 8th March, and therefore it is right that the site is repurposed to support the students and staff on campus. There are alternative community testing sites across the county and more sites are in development.
We continue to work closely with the University and I would like to extent my thanks to them for their support in setting up lateral flow device testing and for their continuing work in keeping their students and staff safe.
See more information on Lateral Flow device testing and guidance on how to book a testing slot.
It is important to note that a negative test result is not an absolute guarantee that you do not have COVID-19. Therefore you must still carry out thorough and regular hand washing, maintain 2 metre social distancing from those you do not live with and wear face coverings where required to do so.
If you do have COVID-19 symptoms, please do not use these sites. You can
book a test online , on the Test and Trace app, or by calling 119.