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COVID-19 testing for agency nurses

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Supporting you through COVID-19

23/04/2020 By Sarah

We have been in contact with the Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) as well as relevant local health bodies to seek clarity on how agency nurses can gain access to COVID-19 tests as part of the UK and Ireland’s National Testing Programme.

The following advice is applicable to agency workers who work for the Scottish Nursing Guild. If you do not work for us then we advise you to contact your agency for clarification of how you can gain access to a test.

Who is eligible for testing?
The National Testing Programme provides coronavirus (COVID-19) tests to symptomatic frontline workers or symptomatic members of their household. This is to support the return to work of frontline workers and help employers maximise their workforce capacity during this unprecedented time.

If you work for the Scottish Nursing Guild and are unable to work because either:
a. you believe you have COVID-19 symptoms or,
b. you believe a member of your household has COVID-19 symptoms

then you are eligible for testing. Unfortunately, you are not eligible for testing if you think you have been exposed to COVID-19. You are only eligible if you are symptomatic and having to self-isolate. The key purpose of the National Testing Programme is to support frontline workers get back to work quickly.

What do you need to do?

Living and working in Scotland

Scotland’s testing programme is being operated at local level. Each region has its own testing application and delivery process. Scotland is also only testing symptomatic frontline workers (or symptomatic members of their household) if they have had symptoms for 5 days or less. If you or a member of your household is symptomatic and has been so for 5 days or less, please get in touch with the call centre team and we will send you the relevant testing application information for your local area.

Living and working in Northern Ireland

The 5 major trusts across Northern Ireland are now managing testing for all independent sector and agency frontline workers who fall within their counties: Belfast Trust, Northern Trust, Southern Trust, South Eastern Trust and Western Trust. If you or a member of your household is symptomatic, please contact the call centre team and we’ll provide you with the relevant testing application information.

Living and working in the Republic of Ireland

Please click here for the latest guidance on testing in the Republic of Ireland.

If you are concerned that you may be displaying symptoms of coronavirus or have any other concerns, you should visit the GOV.UK website or the HSE website which provides the latest Government advice and guidance.

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