The first of two brand new state-of-art mobile testing centres goes on the road this week, with its first stop at Exmouth’s Foxholes Carpark this Saturday, February 27.
It follows a successful trial of one of the new mobile test centres at Middlemoor last Friday when more than 140 staff were tested for COVID-19.
The two mobile testing centres have been purchased by Devon County Council and will offer rapid COVID-19 tests, with results within the hour.
Each van will visit the largest communities in the two areas of Devon that currently do not have fixed testing facilities and have the highest prevalence of COVID-19; East Devon and West Devon.
They will each be stationed for two designated days each week for the foreseeable future at a central location in three of largest communities in the areas they are covering.
The East Devon van will be stationed at Exmouth’s Foxholes Carpark, near the Lifeboat Station on Saturdays and Tuesdays, at Axminster’s West Street Short Stay Car Park, on West Street, on Sundays and Wednesdays and in Honiton’s Blackdown House car park, Mondays and Thursdays.
Starting on Thursday March 4 at Tavistock’s Riverside Car Park, and again on Mondays and Thursdays thereafter, the West Devon van will also stop at Okehampton’s Mill Road Car Park on Tuesdays and Fridays and at Ivybridge’s Leonards Road Car Park on Wednesdays and Saturdays.
Working alongside DCC’s fixed sites in Exeter and Barnstaple – with sites at Tiverton and Newton Abbot coming online soon – the mobile testing centres will help ensure that anybody who may come into contact with the public or who leaves their home to work or volunteer can get tested quickly and easily
This includes carers, the emergency services, taxi drivers, volunteers who are helping those shielding or operators of public transport such as taxis or buses.
Around one in three people who have COVID-19 do not show any symptoms and may unintentionally be spreading the infection.
The mobile test centres, offering regular rapid testing, will help identify those non-symptomatic carriers of the virus.
The tests are quick, easy to book and results are back within an hour via text or email.
If you are in regular contact with others you are advised to take these quick tests twice a week to prevent the potential spread of the virus.
And if you do test positive, you must self-isolate immediately to prevent transmitting the virus to others.
The latest information about where and how to access testing is available on our website.
Steve Brown, Director of Public Health Devon, said:
“These two new mobile test centres are a vital tool in helping us ensure that those who live in more remote locations and cannot easily get to our fixed facilities, have access to quick, regular and painless testing when they need it.
“If you do test positive you must self-isolate at home. But please remember, even if you test negative you must still continue to follow national guidance around social distancing, wearing a face covering, and washing your hands properly and regularly.
“If everyone continues to follow these simple steps, we will prevent the transmission of the virus.”
To book a rapid test and to find out more about Community Testing in Devon, visit devon.cc/testing