Portsmouth households with children can now collect home Covid testing kits
CITY residents living with school or college pupils are now eligible for asymptomatic Covid home testing kits in a bid to keep infection rates down.
The tests - that check for coronavirus when you do not have symptoms - can be collected from the Guildhall test centre by adults in households which include children who attend nursery, school or college.
They can be collected twice weekly from the site without appointment between 8am and 8pm, and adults in the childcare and support bubbles are also eligible.
Helen Atkinson, the city's public health boss, said: 'As we follow the roadmap out of the national lockdown, testing is one of the vital tools we have - testing if you have symptoms, and testing if you don't.
'One in three of those who catch the virus don't develop symptoms and so can unknowingly spread the virus. In Portsmouth we now have access to free asymptomatic testing, so adults in a household with children and young people should collect their home test kits to help protect themselves, their families and friends and the wider community.
'Community collect testing will help keep the city's infection rate down and allow our nurseries, schools and colleges to stay open to all pupils and students.'
Asymptomatic home test kits are also available at the Eldon Road test site in the city centre and the North Harbour Road test site in Cosham between 1.30pm and 7pm.
Supervised asymptomatic testing has been available at the Guildhall since February for anyone not part of a national testing programme who needs to leave home.
Ms Atikinson added: 'I'm pleased to say we have secured funding to extend our supervised community testing offer until the end of June. And we have capacity to test more people who currently need to leave home, including anyone whose employer hasn’t yet set up their own workplace asymptomatic testing programme.'
And Portsmouth businesses have until March 31 to register with Portsmouth City Council to operate a workplace asymptomatic test programme - even if they’re not yet open or are not able to start using the tests straight away.