Whilst national restrictions are in force, City of York Council is expanding its symptom-free testing offer to local residents.

The Council is now expanding its testing to include anyone living or working in York who is unable to work from home during the lockdown and who come into contact with other people during the course of their work, including staff working in education and early years settings and those in factories or working in construction.

Testing continues to be offered to those who support the most vulnerable in the city, to school pupils who are eligible to attend school and to teachers who will be working in schools.

We advise that tests are booked regularly (every week), and that people get tested twice, 3 days apart. More test slots have been made available and residents are being encouraged to book their place now.

The Council is also working to identify more testing sites in the coming weeks. We are seeing a high demand for testing and are working hard to increase capacity so if people experience difficulties in booking please try again later when slots may have become available.

The Council is asking that those who are no longer going into school or work as a result of the national restrictions to cancel their appointment if they no longer need it. This will help provide tests to other residents who need a test urgently. You can do this by clicking the link in the confirmation email or visiting our booking website clicking the ‘reschedule or cancel your appointment’ option.

Cllr Keith Aspden, Leader of City of York Council, said:

It is estimated that 1 in 3 people with coronavirus do not display symptoms and therefore, some individuals will be spreading the virus without realising.

“That is why we are committed to offering symptom-free tests to help stop the spread of the virus. Given the recent changes in restrictions, we have expanded our criteria to offer it to those most likely to come into contact with others.

“We will be looking to open more testing sites in the coming weeks, and we are hugely grateful to York St John University for their support and other partners who are offering their help.”

Sharon Stoltz, Director for Public Health said:

The early identification of those who have coronavirus and subsequent self-isolation will really help us drive down the number of new cases.

“Thank you to the thousands who have been tested so far and book a slot. I would urge anyone who is eligible to get tested regularly to protect those they love as well as the wider York community. We would also be really grateful if those who no longer need a test as a result of the change in restrictions cancel their appointment so this slot can be offered to another resident who may need it urgently.

“If you have symptoms of Coronavirus please cancel your appointment and arrange a test through the NHS at www.nhs.uk/coronavirus or by calling 119.

“More venues will be opening across the city soon and we will share more details when we can.”

To book a symptom-free test please visit www.york.gov.uk/SymptomFreeCOVIDTest. Telephone support is available Monday to Friday, between 9.00am and 5.00pm on 01904 551559