Targeted asymptomatic testing launches in Kent on Friday (December 18), with the first sites in Swale and Thanet to be followed by a rolling programme across the county to try to reduce the rates of Covid-19.
KCC has been working closely with Swale Borough Council and Thanet District Council to identify the sites at the Sheerness East Working Men’s Club in Halfway, and Ramsgate Port, which will be opening on Friday. This is the start of a roll out of asymptomatic testing sites across the whole of Kent.
These sites are in addition to the DHSC run regional and local test sites for people who have symptoms, including those at Manston and Margate. The asymptomatic testing will find people who don’t currently have symptoms who may be unknowingly spreading the virus.
People will be invited to testing by a letter or email.
Residents attending this testing will undergo a lateral flow swab test and will receive their result within half an hour of attending the test. If they are positive, they will be told to self-isolate, follow the national guidance and they will be instructed to have a PCR test to confirm their positive result.
If they are negative, they must still continue to observe social distancing guidelines, wear a mask in public and regularly wash hands.
All Kent residents are urged to keep following the tier three restrictions and limit their social interactions and people are reminded of the importance of self-isolating, not only when they have received a positive test but also while they are awaiting their test results.
KCC Director of Public Health, Andrew Scott-Clark said: “As many as one in three people who have coronavirus have no symptoms and could be spreading it without realising it. We want to identity as many positive cases as possible, especially those who may not have any symptoms and are unknowingly transmitting the virus.
“We will ask anyone who tests positive to stay at home for 10 days and self-isolate, to help break the chain of transmission. This is vitally important to stop COVID-19 from spreading in the community, particularly to people who could become very sick if they catch the virus.”
Staff have been recruited to the asymptomatic testing sites using funding from central Government to support local councils in tier 3 to help reduce rates.
Government data shows 145 new positive cases reported for Thanet today (December 14) making a seven day total of 638, a rise of 6.7% on the preceding seven days. A total of 5,255 positive tests have been recorded for Thanet.
The rolling seven day rate per 100,000 people is 421.4 as of December 9, a rise on the figure for the previous day.
Two deaths within 28 days of a positive test has been recorded today, making 17 in the last seven days and 197 as of December 13 (loss of life within 28 days of a positive test). Covid-19 is mentioned on the death certificate but may not be the primary cause of death.
The latest data published by NHS England shows a rise in the number of patients with Covid being cared for in East Kent Hospitals.
The trust had 227 covid patients as of December 8, a rise from 121 on December 1. This figure is for the main hospitals at Margate, Ashford and, to a lesser degree, Canterbury.
The data shows 18 mechanical ventilation beds in use for patients with confirmed positive covid tests.
The data does not record how many patients are in individual hospitals although a source informs The Isle of Thanet News that currently (week ending December 13) patients are QEQM 112, Ashford 98 and Canterbury 14.
The trust has recorded 618 covid related deaths across its hospitals since the pandemic began up to December 12 and recorded 47 covid related deaths between December 1-7. Data for December 8-12 shows 22 recorded deaths but NHS England warns figures for these dates could change as post mortem tests and data are validated.
Details of Covid attributed deaths data: NHS England and NHS Improvement publish the number of patients who have died in hospital and tested positive for COVID-19 in England. Since Tuesday 28 April, NHS England and NHS Improvement also reports the number of patient deaths where there has been no COVID-19 positive test result, but where COVID-19 is documented as a direct or underlying cause of death on part 1 or part 2 of the death certification process. This change has been introduced for deaths that occurred on 24 April and subsequently.
This means the NHS England and NHS Improvement data collection provides information on all COVID related (suspected and confirmed) deaths in England hospitals.
Wow….. Thanet residents are queuing up already. We do have concerned residents then.
Well I guess we’ll all be back to square one now there’s a new aggressive strain in the South East.
There is a new variant. There is no proof as I understand it other than having changed spikes that it is anymore contagious.
What is alarming is the Cummings debacle, the lack of concern by people to keep their distance, lamentably incompetent use of face masks and hand cleansing and most of all school students using public transport and not wearing masks other than a few considerate ones.
The Government used the vaccine to fulfil their pathetic desire to be the first like boys playing eSports. People dropped their guard even further and assumed this was some kind of all clear.
This disease in its continually adapting form will be with us for years at least four, maybe for decades and new pandemics will come to replace it.
There is no British Standard for airconditioning to capture this virus so you take pot luck going into any interior as the main transmission of the virus is aerosol.
And still, the NHS is unable to cope and still the staff there, in care homes and carers are being unnecessarily put under strain, still don’t have the best PPE and whatever happened to the Nightingale Hospitals? And still, they are on low wages with no regard to the very dangerous situations they work in – danger money? No doubt there will be no Christmas Bonus or even a sodding Christmas Card.
This Government has handled this crisis, expensively, paying inexperienced companies to make PPE for instance. It has made decisions that have caused unnecessary deaths which should attract a charge of manslaughter. It continues to lie, be selective with the facts, actually makeup science like herd immunity and perform absolutely stupidly. Even Tory Lords and some of his own MP’s are saying that Boris Johnson should go. They should all go and some of them to prison!
Back to the tests. If it helps people focus their minds to protecting themselves and more importantly others then good. And whatever the accuracy of the test which is not impressive, getting one done quickly and a follow-up will help. But most of all putting Politicians in charge who actually care about the public rather than their own egos would create a significant change to peoples luck in surviving this with satisfactory health, wealth and wellbeing.
Clare your a little OTT on regards to manslaughter charges and sending them to prison. Every Government around the world has made mistakes, they are going on scientific advise and to be quite honest I feel quite sorry for the Government damed if they do or dont. I would hate to be in their position, the stress they must be under.Rememnber Boris was quite ill with Covid, maybe give the guy a break. We will get through this,if people obey the rules a little bit better, thats where some of the problem lies with the public not just the Government.So instead of being so NEGATIVE try and be positive it might do you good.Merry Christmas.
One has to wait “ for an email or letter” how’s that going to work?
Please take up the offer if contacted , its one way to get out of tier 3 and open up closed businesses
We all come out of tier 3 on December 23rd for five days for a ‘triple household bubble’ Covid super-spreader event, then when the death toll from that stupidity starts mounting up in January & the hospitals are all overrun with sick people the government will lock the entire country down again for a month or so.
And risk the chance of a false positive test and being asked to isolate for two weeks, no thank you. I’ll do that once there are people checking on the non mask wearers in supermarkets, and ensuring that its not a whole family holiday around the aisles.
The extra testing is used solely to extend the restrictions. Would it not be better to look at compariative levels of hospital admissions for covid between now and the first wave? That being a true reflection of the amount of covid infection in the community.
At the peak around 1000 people a day died, last figure i can find is that 232 people died , so around a quarter. Thats before you try and work out the difference between “of covid,” “with covid “and “within 28 days of a positive covid test.”
All of which have been used.
The 1000 against 232 , rather suggests that the virus is only 23% as prevalent as it was in the first wave peak. All the increased testing tells us little really about our relative infection rates to march/april but is instead just used to make things look awful now.
Any chance of some real honesty?
Your public spirited ness does you credit. With people like you setting the moral and ethical standards, we can all look forward to a glorious future.
My moral compass works well. I just refuse to be drawn into measures that are patently unfounded in a society where we’re meant to watch the rules flouted day in day out , but there’s no one willing to confront the wrong doers.
I come within 2m of around 6 people a week on average, don’t go near the old or visibly infirm, i shopped for my 90 year old neighbour in the first lock down. I take my cues from the frontline nhs workers i know, not the alarmist media or rabidly politically correct.
The government is not being honest about these tests. While important to know if positive, there is a 50% false negative rate. That is infected people testing negative. Most important actions are to wear masks, keep distance, wash hands AND be aware of indoor aerosol spread which is the main cause of infection. Do not meet others in enclosed spaces, outdoors only safe place. Government must provide support for people to self isolate- income to live on for 2weeks, use empty hotel rooms if crowded households, more resources to local hospitals to decrease spread in hospital
I don’t think it matters too much, as long as you’re not dependent on it to inform your decision on whether to visit an elderly relative in a care home.
I think the objective is much broader. If it’s only 50% accurate, then if 400 infected but asymptomatic people are tested, 200 potential spreaders will be taken out of the loop.
Be even better if the test was 90% effective, though .
If a third of people with the virus are asymptomatic, then they could be infecting Shopping trolley handles! Some supermarkets are still not disinfecting AFTER every use, so someone who uses one, sneezes, coughs or otherwise infects the handles, will pass this on to the next person to use the trolley! I have been trying to raise this with authorities since last April, but Environmental Health tell me the Government omitted to allow them to compel stores to disinfect their shopping trolleys, so they don’t! The blustering, bumbling Boris, didn’t think of this either when they set up the new Rules, so well done you idiot!
Very good comments by Coral Jones. Will now think even more carefully about Xmas plans.
Though, re this new test centre, who gets called in ? If we don’t have any symptoms, who identifies us as needing a test?
On the flipside , an article pointing out the danger of false positives and the very real possibility of having a “screendemic”. https://www.bmj.com/content/371/bmj.m4487/rr
If invited to a test, do we have to go by electric barge?
As informed commentators have said, the level of false positives in the testing drives the push for lockdowns and tier systems. These methods are killing more people than the virus itself through medical treatments not addressed, destruction of jobs and businesses, a true mental health crisis and suicide increases, and failing education and opportunities for the young. The Reset agenda looks likely as nobody would operate in such a crass and uninformed way in a functional world – here or globally.
“These methods are killing more people than the virus itself ..”
Either publish the evidence for your statement, or stop publishing it.
Among the several reasons for tiers and lockdowns is that hospitals are filling up, and staff (that most vital and valuable of resources ) are exhausted.
If you’re so convinced that Covid is bunkum please wear a label round your neck with the message “NHS ‘ no treatment please”
Hospitals are actually running a lower capacity than they otherwise would be for the time of year. Surely everyone recalls the annual headlines of the nhs reaching capacity each winter. This year they are much quieter. We’ll see in the coming years how much damage has been done to the nations health by the lockdowns. Without doubt in terms of “years of life lost” the non covid additonal deaths will be the greater.
As the average age of those dying with covid is 80+ so the number of “years of life” lost is minimal.
History will judge that many mistakes were made and that we should have vaccinated the vulnerable and let everyone else carry on as normal. Lots of lessons should be learnt , but no doubt won’t.
I wonder what qualifications you have that you challenge the opinions and actions of the global science and medicine?
Just a bit of faith in statistics and enough understanding of the data presented to work out its all tosh. A headline today says that in london the hospitals have around 25% of the number of patients being ventilated compared to the first wave. So again how many infected people were there in london in april in comparison to today?
Plus i know a number of people that work on th frontline in the nhs and listen to what they say about what they’ve seen.
Plus the ability to read the numbers and see that the chance of someone dying of covid under the age of 60 and with no underlying health conditions duing is negligible and that even upto 75 i’d be prepared to take my chances.
Vaccinate the elderly , the vulnerable first and then offer to those that want it. The country is just paying the price for being fat unfit and with poor diets ( which brings with it a plethora of undesirable conditions).
You say it’s all tosh, I say we’re lucky that we live in a western democracy where we have clean water on tap, domestic sanitation systems and a free-at-point-of-use health system.
I understand that the NHS has learned from the first Lockdown, and no longer treat every Covid case as an emergency! This means fewer people are being hospitalised unless they are seriously ill, or are high risk.
Which if true , again shows that covid is not as bad as we’re led to believe. To continue banging the drum, be a reasonable weight, have a bit of fitness and eat a reasonably balanced diet and in the absence of being over 70 or having serious underlying conditions , you’ll be fine and need do nothing more than limit your contact with the vulnerable as much as possible.
Well the virus has killed over 66,000 in Britain so far, and left hundreds of thousands with possibly life long ill health. There was a piece on the radio this morning of someone who even had to have some fingers amputated, due to blood clots causing gangrene! Apart from causing lung disease, it can damage livers, kidneys and other organs, for life! So everyone get vaccinated, if not for yourself, but so you don’t infect others, possibly unknowingly!
Ive just spoken to tdc about the test site supposed to open Friday at ramsgate port and they told me they are not aware of any test site and there doesn’t seem to be any activity down the port?can anymore explain please
It was announced by Kent County Council
How do I book for this asymptotic test at Ramsgate harbour.
Why is this facility ‘invite only’ ? Surely those families with teenage children should be encouraged to attend on a ‘Walk in’ or ‘Drive in’ basis such as the other symptoms only sites.
What is the criteria/qualification for a KCC/TDC invite?
Is the ‘invite’ a summons?
If not there could be 1000’s not bothering to turn up as they have no symptoms!
If the KCC director of public health is right about 1 in 3 Covid carriers are not symptomatic surely the best possible capture of these cases is for this facility to be open to all comers.
Thanks for letting us know about it Kathy. Very straightforward and easy service; staff very friendly, results within an hour. We were both clear. Doesn’t mean we will go out partying or that we will assume it couldn’t be a false negative, but it is at least something extra we can currently do to avoid infecting others. All the best to all at IoT News for 2021.