A new testing site was set up at County Hall in Kingston on Wednesday, to manage rising coronavirus infections across South London.
The number of people with Covid-19 in the UK has topped half a million, after 22,961 new daily cases were recorded by Public Health England in the United Kingdom on October 4.
Kingston’s case numbers are trending upward with 17 new cases as of October 3 up from six positive cases recorded the previous week.
They remain lower than other parts of the capital, however, recording 379 new cases on Saturday alone.
Kingston Council’s director of public health Iona Lidington said: “There is now very high demand for coronavirus tests and it is vital we test people with these symptoms to help stop the spread of the virus and protect our community.
“By increasing the testing capacity within our borough through the new site, we want to make it easier for all residents who have symptoms to access a test quickly.”
NHS staff will be testing individuals at the Surrey County Hall on Penryn Road in Kingston near the town centre. The walk-in facility is open daily from 8am to 8pm and visits must be booked ahead of time through the NHS portal at nhs.uk/coronavirus or by calling 119.
Coronavirus symptoms include: fever, coughing and loss or change in sense of smell or taste.
Advice on how to travel to the site will be provided once your appointment is confirmed.
If you prefer not to walk in for a test, drive through testing is still available nearby at Chessington World of Adventures and Gatwick airport.
The government’s mandate is to improve accessibility to tests, especially for those who are without transportation.
Once a person tests positive for the virus, they will be contacted by the NHS Test and Trace team to begin the process of tracking their contacts.
It is now illegal to break quarantine or fail to self-isolate after testing positive for Covid-19 and if found guilty, can be punishable by a fine of up to a £10,000.
Lidington said, “It is still vital that anyone with Covid-19 symptoms gets tested.”
Public Health England indicated in its latest Covid-19 Surveillance Report that the highest case rates continued to be seen in the 20 to 29 age range.
Thousands of students have left home to begin their studies causing higher institutions, including Kingston University, to implement social distancing policies on campus and introduce blended learning.