Highland Council and NHS Highland have announced that community Covid-19 testing will take place in Portree and Dornoch from August 2 to August 6.
The expansion of the rapid testing programme in the Highlands is to allow people in the region to become confident in using the Lateral Flow Device (LFD) which detects if someone has contracted Covid-19.
Mobile clinics are being mobilised throughout the Highlands with staff and volunteers on hand to administer the test. It is worth noting that the additional testing is not due to an outbreak in the area.
The mobile testing unit affectionately known as ‘Jabbernaut’ will be set up in Bayfield car park in Portree while ‘Moves like Jabber’ will be present at Dornoch Academy.
Taking regular LFD tests protects communities from a potential outbreak as it makes it easier to track the spread of the virus. Although being fully vaccinated provides a high level of protection against the virus, it is still possible to contract Covid-19 while having had two jabs.
‘By expanding community testing we will be able to identify more cases.’
Convener of The Highland Council, Bill Lobban said: “In Highland, we now have three mobile testing units available to travel to identified locations with a team of trained staff to deliver testing for people without symptoms.
“Our mobile units can be deployed wherever needed. If mobile units come to your area we encourage you to make use of the testing facilities as this will enable quick detection of any localised cases of Covid-19. It also offers reassurance for anyone concerned about potentially being an asymptomatic carrier of the virus.”
Dr Tim Allison, director of public health with NHS Highland, commented: “Many people who have coronavirus have no symptoms, and will be spreading it without realising. By expanding community testing we will be able to identify more cases giving us a better chance of stopping Covid-19 from spreading.
“The community testing programme offers rapid Covid-19 tests for people without symptoms. If you do have symptoms, you should not visit a Covid-19 Mobile Clinic. Instead, you should self-isolate immediately and seek a Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) test. Symptoms include new continuous cough, fever, or loss of, or change in, sense of smell or taste.”