Lambeth council worked in partnership with PHE and NHS Test and Trace to deliver this enhanced in testing in a response to a cluster of cases of the variant first identified in South Africa locally.
More than 70,000 tests were registered by people over 11-years-old in Lambeth since the 12 April, with 0.2 per cent positive Covid-19 cases reported. Every positive case identified through testing is another person who can self-isolate, and another set of contacts traced. Every positive case found can help break chains of transmission and suppress the virus in the community.
Ruth Hutt, Lambeth’s Director of Public Health, said: “We thank everyone who took part in this enhanced testing, and the preliminary findings indicate no spread of the variant locally.
“We know many people have gone out of their way to get tested, often waiting patiently in line to have a PCR swab. It is hugely appreciated. Our communities have demonstrated a real unity and commitment here for which we are hugely grateful.
“We will share the full results from this surge in testing when we have received sequencing results for all positive samples which can be successfully analysed.”
For people who do test positive, Lambeth has a comprehensive Covid-19 self-isolation support service for those who need it. That includes payments of up to £500 for residents on low incomes. To find out more call 0800 054 1215, 9am to 5pm, seven days a week or visit www.lambeth.gov.uk/self-isolate-help.
All positive COVID-19 samples with a high enough viral load from our testing in Lambeth will continue to be sent for genomic sequencing. This will help understand the spread of the variant locally. Full results from this surge in testing will be released when sequencing results for all positive samples has been analysed.
If any variant of concern cases are identified the local health protection team will be immediately notified so they can deliver an enhanced public health response.
Everyone should continue to get regular rapid symptom-free tests. Routine rapid testing is available to everyone through: home testing, workplace testing, community testing, collection from test sites during specific collection windows, testing on-site at schools and colleges and collection from participating pharmacies.
For more information visit lambeth.gov.uk.
Please note that despite the main operation ending, the option for people to continue to return testing kits and have onsite PCR Covid-19 testing in some capacity will continue to operate, but on a smaller scale through the week to ensure no one misses out.
As a result residents will be able to drop off PCR test kits for analysis past today at:
- Lambeth Town Hall, Brixton
- Streatham Library, Streatham
- St John’s Church, Waterloo
- Brockwell Park, near Brockwell Hall
People living and working in Lambeth can continue to have on site PCR Covid-19 tests at one of four NHS sites that will remain open through the week depending on demand. They are at:
- Clapham Common, Windmill Drive, near the playground
- Stockwell, Next to Stockwell War Memorial, South Lambeth Road
- Jubilee Gardens, Belvedere Rd, South Bank,
- Windrush Square, Brixton
Opening times are on the council website lambeth.gov.uk.
If you have coronavirus symptoms, you should book a test at nhs.uk/coronavirus, via the NHS COVID-19 app or call 119. You must continue to follow the national guidance and remember, hands, face, space and fresh air.