You may have seen in the news recently that Staffordshire will be increasing the testing of residents in a bid to identify more cases of Covid-19 and reduce the spread of infection.
We are one of several local authorities to sign up for early roll out of new rapid turnaround tests, and there may be an opportunity to use these in sixth forms for schools and colleges that are interested.
We are also expanding our advice around when to get a test.
Currently anyone who has one of the main symptoms of persistent cough, high temperature, new cough or loss of taste or smell must self-isolate immediately and book a test.
However, with many people displaying other symptoms, we are asking residents in Staffordshire to consider getting tested as a precaution if they have other symptoms such as:
• Aches and pains
• Feeling very tired for no good reason
• Sore throat
• Runny nose
• Sometimes ‘tummy ache’ in children
People with any of these symptoms can carry on going to school or work if they are well enough to do so and only need to self-isolate if the test comes back positive.
We are asking all education providers to communicate this to their parents, as often children with Covid-19 can display different symptoms to adults. We want to ensure as many people as possible consider getting a test, even if it is merely a precaution.
The nationaltesting centres across the county have good availability, and can be booked through the NHS website. People booking a test through this website need to check the ‘My council has asked me to get a test’ option.
We also have community testing sites that change on a weekly basis. People can view if
there are any sites set up near them by visiting our testing website.
The advice supersedes the symptom checker chart we sent you a few weeks ago, please
disregard this chart from now on.
Full letter below
30th October 2020
Today the Government has announced that Staffordshire will be raised to the High Alert Level for Covid-19, from Sunday 1 November 2020.
New tighter restrictions will be in force to try and limit the spread of infection and stop the current rising rate of cases across the county.
The main change is that it will be illegal for households to mix indoors socially with others, unless part of a support bubble. This includes in people’s homes and public indoor places.
Across the county, education settings have been doing an amazing job since September to maintain education and childcare for our children, young people and adults and to ensure that those who need isolate at home are able to continue their studies, when appropriate.
It is now more important than ever that we get this virus under control, stop the spread, and do everything we can to avoid being escalated to the Very High Alert Level, which would see more restrictions put in place
You can help with this, by reminding children, parents and staff not to congregate in groups of more than one household indoors or more than six people outdoors, not to come into schools and other educational settings if they are waiting for the results of a Covid-19 test, and to continue to follow the law and government guidance.
The rules are summarised below, and more details are available on the gov.uk website.
Below is a summary of the new guidance:
• You must not mix socially with people you do not live with, in any indoor setting whether at home or, for example, a pub or restaurant, unless they are part of your support.
• You may continue to mix with people outdoors (including in a garden or a park) but you must not meet in a group more than six, and you must follow social distancing rules.
• If you need to travel, you should aim to reduce the number of journeys you make where possible.
• Voluntary and charity groups can continue to support and care for people in their
• Full guidance can be found at www.gov.uk/coronavirus.
Thank you for your hard work in these challenging times.
Follow this link for further details on changes as we move to high in Staffordshire. Click here
A Quick Guide for Parents
How to get tested Click here