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Fantastic response on day one of testing in Diss and Roydon

20 February 2021

More than 5,000 people living and working in the parishes of Diss and Roydon have responded on the first day of targeted testing in the area to identify the spread of the variant of Covid-19 that is believed to have originated in South Africa.

The 14-day programme of precautionary testing was launched on Friday 19 February after a very small number of cases of the variant which could not be traced back to international travel were identified in this area of South Norfolk.

A total of 10,000 people have been targeted for testing in the area, which has been available via three mobile testing units, home testing swabs available at two pick up sites, or testing kits delivered door-to-door for those unable to attend local sites.

Around 4,000 people have collected testing swabs today (Friday 19 February) to use at home and 1,000 people have attended the three mobile testing units. The response has been so positive that no further home tests are available from our pick up points, though they remain open for people to drop tests off. 

Norfolk County Council’s Deputy Director of Public Health Diane Steiner said: “The response has been absolutely fantastic. I would like to thank all those people who have participated so far.

“This is a great start to our testing programme and goes a long way towards enabling us to identify if there is any wider spread of this variant.

“We still have more than 10 days of testing left so I would encourage people to continue to keep up the great work. We have good capacity at our mobile testing sites, which are open seven days a week, so please do book a test at a convenient time for you.”

Anyone who has picked up a test today for home testing is reminded to ensure they return it to the drop off points within 24 hours of using it. Tests can be dropped off at Midwich Ltd in Vince’s Road Diss, IP22 4YT or outside Roydon White Hart/Roydon Church any time between 9am and 7pm, Monday to Sunday, with no appointment needed. Please don’t use the post boxes at these sites.

Tests can be booked for anyone over the age of 16 who lives or works in the parishes of Diss and Roydon. Bookings can be made from 8pm each day by ringing 119 or visiting www.gov.uk/get-coronavirus-test with appointments available at three mobile testing sites at:

  • Diss youth and community centre, (19 February - 25 February 9am – 3pm)
  • Roydon Community Centre (19 February - 4 March 12 noon – 6pm)
  • Diss leisure Centre (19 February - 4 March 9am – 3pm)

Those who don’t have Covid symptoms should click ‘yes’ when asked ‘is the person who needs a test part of a trial or government project?’ and then select ‘taking part in community testing’.

Those who do have Covid symptoms follow the instructions on the website and choose one of the mobile testing units listed above and drive to the testing centre if they can.

Letters with details of the testing being made available are being sent to all households in the Diss and Roydon areas. Positive tests will be sequenced to identify any further spread of the variant of Covid-19 that is believed to have originated in South Africa, enabling a better understanding of the variant and identifying if there are any more cases of this strand of the virus in the area. Anyone who tests positive must self-isolate immediately with their households and pass on details of their contacts to NHS Test and Trace.

Anyone unable to attend a mobile testing unit or experiencing difficulties with booking a test should contact the South Norfolk help hub on 01508 533933.

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