Follow up test needed for those who receive positive ‘lateral flow’ Covid result

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People who test positive for coronavirus using a ‘lateral flow’ test are being reminded they should have a follow-up PCR test, to confirm the diagnosis.

Those who visit one of the city’s walk-up centres receive their result from NHS Test and Trace, via text message and email.

There is a possibility that some who test positive with lateral flow are ‘false positive’, and the offer of a confirmatory PCR test will identify the small number that are false positives.

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Director of Public Health, Matthew Ashton said: “The confirmatory PCR test is an important part of the evaluation of the lateral flow test, so we need everyone who tests positive to book one, just to be sure that it is accurate.

“If the confirmatory PCR test also comes back positive, then you must continue to isolate for 10 days since the initial ‘lateral flow’ test. Everyone in your household will be a ‘close contact’ and must self-isolate for 14 days. Contact tracing will be initiated through the NHS or local contact tracing team and other close contacts will be advised to quarantine for 14 days.

“If the confirmatory PCR test result is negative, then you will no longer be required to self-isolate, and your contacts will no longer need to quarantine. You will still need to adhere to the national lockdown restrictions.”

Eligible individuals who test positive through the pilot will be entitled to the £500 Test and Trace Support Payment in the same way as a regular swab test through NHS Test and Trace. The government has laid down eligibility criteria and they are set out here, along with details of how to apply:

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