Covid workplace testing programme extended to offer home testing
The Government has announced that businesses in England with 10 or more employees can now register for free Covid tests for staff to take at home. The deadline for registering is 12 April.
Businesses that cannot offer on-site testing, for example due to lack of space or because they operate across multiple sites, can register now for free lateral flow tests that employees can take twice a week at home. This includes businesses that are not currently open. They can register now so that they can order tests when they open. Currently the Government says the free tests will be made available until the end of June and the registration website indicates businesses can only register if employees cannot work from home. Government advice remains that employees should work from home where they can and this applies until at least 21 June.
Staff will be able to collect the lateral flow test kits from their employer, complete the test at home and report their results to the NHS using the gov.uk address provided. Results will be available in 30 minutes and those testing positive will need to self-isolate. They should also inform their employer of a positive result and will then need to take a confirmatory PCR test.
Employer wishing to register can register here.
For further information on the legal implications of workplace testing, you can read Emily Battcock’s article in Employment Law Journal.
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