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Residents advised to only book a Covid test if they have symptoms

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As the number of COVID-19 tests that can be taken each day is currently limited because there is a national issue with lab capacity, Barking and Dagenham Council is urging residents to only book a test if they have symptoms.

Residents should only book a test if they have at least one of the COVID-19 symptoms, (a temperature or a new, continuous cough, or loss of/change to their sense of taste or smell), or if they have been specifically advised to take a test, to make sure they’re not taking a test slot away from someone who really needs it.

The council is providing this advice as a second borough test site opens today to make it easier for residents with symptoms of COVID-19 to get tested for coronavirus, nearer to their home.

The second test site is based at Chadwell Heath Community Centre, High Road, Chadwell Heath RM6 6AS and will be open between 2 to 5pm (Tuesday 15 September), between 10am to 5pm (Wednesday 16 September), and then from Thursday 17 September onwards it will be open 8am to 8pm every day, seven days a week.

This follows the borough’s first test site which is based at Mayesbrook Park Car Park, Lodge Avenue, Dagenham RM8 2JR and is open 8am to 8pm every day, seven days a week.

Residents who have at least one of the symptoms should book a test by calling NHS 119 or visiting the NHS coronavirus page.

They can walk in but the borough’s test sites have been extremely busy with available slots gone by early morning, so booking is best – if residents can’t get a slot straight away, they should keep trying at different times as test slots get released in the morning and evening.

Residents who do walk in will need to bring a smart phone with them so they can register when they arrive.

Our test sites are incredibly busy at the moment with test slots going by early morning, so please book via 119 or online at NHS - and remember, if you can’t get a slot straight away, please keep trying at different times as test slots are being released in the morning and evening.

Councillor Maureen Worby, Cabinet Member for Social Care and Health Integration, said, “Right now there’s a national issue with testing lab capacity, so it’s really important that we provide tests to people who really need them. So our message is clear, you should only book a test if you have symptoms or if you’ve been advised to get a test.

The test sites are incredibly busy at the moment with test slots going by early morning, so please book via 119 or online at NHS - and remember, if you can’t get a slot straight away, please keep trying at different times as test slots are being released in the morning and evening.

“COVID-19 cases are increasing every day and I’m calling on every one of our residents to do their bit to help stop the spread. Please do the right thing and continue to socially-distance, wear a face covering when you’re out, don’t meet up with more than six people and keep washing your hands regularly.”

A third testing site will be coming to the borough soon.

More information about the test sites.

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