Further extension to Workforce Covid-19 testing programme

Date published: 28 April 2021

Health Minister Robin Swann has announced a further expansion to the current asymptomatic testing programme for workforces.

All organisations with 10 or more employees or volunteers, who cannot work from home, can now access the workforce asymptomatic testing programme. Previously this was open to organisations with more than 50 employees.

Minister Swann said: “Since the launch of the Northern Ireland asymptomatic testing programme there has been a great deal of interest from employers with 321 expressions of interest made.  These have come from organisations and companies in the public, private and third sectors. 

“This is a significant move in the testing programme as up to one third of people who have coronavirus are asymptomatic.  My Department is focusing on rapidly identifying these people to isolate and reduce transmission of the virus. This will be essential as Northern Ireland moves out of lockdown.

“The further extension will enable even more organisations to take advantage of this important weapon in the fight against Covid-19.

Provision has also been made to enable small businesses and organisations with 10 or less employees to access rapid LFD tests. The range of options will be expanding over the coming weeks but currently includes a LFD Collect service from Local Testing Sites and a Home Delivery service.

Further details of the programme, and information on what it means for employers, are available on the Department’s website and NI Business Info. 

Notes to editors: 

1. LFD collect model will  be available from 26 April 2021 between 3pm and 8pm daily at the following sites:

  • Ulster University (Car Park 4), Cromore Road, Coleraine, BT52 1SA
  • Magee Ulster University, Northland Road, Londonderry, BT48 7JL
  • Ballymena Showgrounds, Slemish Drive, Ballymena, BT43 7DS
  • Car Park at Queen’s Sports Club (PEC), Stranmillis Embankment
  • Longstone Car Park, Lisburn, BT28 1DD
  • Albert Basin/St Christopher Park, William Street, Newry, BT34 2D
  • Lisanelly Avenue, Omagh, BT79 7BQ

2. The Department is currently working with Local Councils and 3rd sector organisations to expand the availability of community Assisted Testing Sites (ATS) and community collection of tests at a wide range of locations across the region. Further updates will be provided as new facilities come on line. 

3. For media enquiries please contact DoH Press Office by email: pressoffice@health-ni.gov.uk

4. Follow us on twitter @healthdpt.

5. The Executive Information Service operates an out of hours service for media enquiries only between 1800hrs and 0800hrs Monday to Friday and at weekends and public holidays. The duty press officer can be contacted on 028 9037 8110.

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