Additional temporary mobile testing available in Oxford
People in Oxford city will be able to get a PCR test at an extra mobile testing unit in response to rising COVID cases in the city.
A mobile testing unit is now in place at Radcliffe Square in central Oxford for both local residents and members of the university who do not have symptoms. It will be in place for four days until Sunday (12 December) and will operate on a walk-in basis from 10.30am - 6.30pm each day.
COVID cases in Oxfordshire have risen by 20 per cent over the past seven days and are now at their highest ever level, at a rate of 666.7 per 100,000. This surpasses the rate recorded at the peak of the winter wave in early January 2021.
Ansaf Azhar, Oxfordshire County Council’s Director for Public Health, said: “Cases across Oxfordshire are rising sharply – higher than the rate of infection we saw back in January. Although we are in a much better situation this winter thanks to the vaccination programme, the number of cases plus this new Omicron variant mean we should not let down our guard and this is reflected in the new measures that the government announced yesterday.
“Alongside following these new measures, we must all continue to maintain sensible behaviours to bring the virus under control. These include regularly washing our hands, wearing a face covering in enclosed and crowded spaces, keeping rooms ventilated and testing regularly. Most importantly, we urge everybody to get their booster jab as soon as they can do so.
“In the meantime, this mobile testing unit will allow us to quickly identify cases of those who have the virus but may not yet have symptoms so that we can break the chain of transmission.”
People who do have symptoms should book an appointment at one of the county’s symptom testing facilities.
What are the new rules?
A number of rules have also been reintroduced by the government in response to the latest wave of infections:
- From today, face coverings are mandatory in most public venues including places of worship, theatres and cinemas. There will be exemptions in venues where it is not practical to wear one, such as when you are eating, drinking or exercising.
- From Monday 13 December, people should work from home where possible.
- From Wednesday 15 December, an NHS COVID pass or proof of negative lateral flow test will be required to gain access to major venues such as nightclubs, indoor venues with more than 500 people, unseated outdoor venues with more than 4,000 people, and any venue with more than 10,000 people.
Those who test positive for the virus should ensure they self-isolate for ten days. Anybody who comes into contact with somebody who has tested positive for the new Omicron variant should also self-isolate for ten days, regardless of their vaccination status.
Find out more about the new measures at gov.uk.
What is a COVID pass?
Anybody aged 18 or over and registered with a GP can get an NHSCOVID pass if they meet any one of the following:
- have had a second vaccination at least two weeks ago
- have had a negative PCR or lateral flow test result in the past 48 hours, and reported it on the NHS website
- have had a positive PCR test result in the past six months, and finished self-isolating
There is more information regarding the COVID pass on the NHS website.
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