What are Rapid COVID Tests and why could it benefit my workplace to offer them?
We’ve supplied many of our clients bulk rapid COVID test kits, which has enabled them to allow a certain amount of staff back to site. By testing before your staff enter the building, and waiting 15 minutes for results, you can have the assurance you are not letting the virus into your facility, helping you to operate smoothly.
Lateral flow device (LFD) testing is a fast and simple way to ‘see the invisible’, and test people who do not have symptoms of COVID-19, but who may still be spreading the virus. Antigen Lateral flow tests give you a positive or negative result for coronavirus in under 15 minutes and can be easily carried out in the environment of a commercial premises with your own staff. Those who test positive must immediately self-isolate to avoid passing the virus on to others. A simple and easy to use test which is CE marked (Approved for use in Europe and UK) and world Health Organisation certified. Around 1 in 3 individuals with COVID-19 do not display symptoms. Opening rapid testing up at your workplace to catch those showing no symptoms in your organisation will help to find positive cases earlier and to break hidden chains of transmission.
With a 10-15 min result time and high Accuracy (+97%), the rapid test is a real breakthrough as you can now protect your own workforce and potentially keep trading should government legislation allow.
Because it is common to carry COVID-19 without symptoms (asymptomatic), a test that rapidly detects these otherwise hidden cases is a very useful additional tool for tackling the virus, especially if it helps business continuity. Lateral flow tests are practical, easy to interpret and fast at giving accurate results.
Clinical evaluation by Public Health England (PHE) and Oxford University shows that the tests perform best when levels of virus are at their highest. Thousands of positive COVID-19 cases have already been detected using these tests. Each positive case identified can help prevent many additional people becoming infected over time.
For a more detailed look at the technical side of how Lateral flow testing works, click here.
Standard lab-based polymerase chain reaction (PCR) tests have to be sent off to a lab, and results don’t come through for 24 – 48 hours, sometimes longer. These tests play a different, but crucial role in the fight against COVID-19.
Why not go for free government test kits?
The main reason many organisations are not going for the free government COVID tests for businesses is you need to adhere to strict protocol to be eligible. You are forced to set up on premises test centres, manage and document it, and so on. This complicated procedure potentially puts their people in close contact at the start of a shift plus a lot of organisations are tight on room. You can only register to order tests if your employees cannot work from home.
When applying for the free government test kits you have to confirm that you have read and will adhere to the SOP (Standard Operating Procedure) given by the government. This SOP goes into a lot of detail in regards to what companies must do as a minimum standard and includes screens and site set up.
The government have said that they will provide companies with Lateral Flow Tests free of charge up until 31 March and then review the situation. It might be extended but it might not!
How can I set up simple rapid COVID testing in my premises?
A lot of companies we work with are looking at ways to ensure they can protect their business prosperity as well as the health of their staff. By providing testing facilities and lateral flow tests at your entrance you could successfully stop COVID entering your facility! Setting up a testing area can be really simple, and we can help you with that. You will need:
These double sided booths with mirrors are made from easy to clean fluted polycarbonate, to offer privacy but still allows light through. Lightweight construction and so easy to assemble – no tools required.
Sanitiser stations – click here
Have touch free hand sanitiser dispensers available as an excellent alternative to hand washing, endorsed by UK government health officials to help reduce the spread of infection.
Antiviral wipes and wipe holder – click here
Keep a tub or pack of wipes handy at every test booth for quick wiping down after use, to kill bacteria and viruses and keeping the area clean for future use.
Safety signage – click here
Hygiene and safety signs are great for communicating your social distancing and safety protocols to employees and members of the public to help combat the spread of infection
How can I safely dispose the test kits?
Lateral Flow Test kits can be treated as general waste if testing is carried out in a workplace or factory. It is important to keep the viral waste safely contained. The Longopac continuous liner system is the perfect solution for this, find out more here on how hygienic this bin system is.