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Surge Testing Extended


With Cases of COVID-19 in the Borough continuing to rise, surge testing to identify positive cases of the virus will continue in three areas of Bedford Borough.

In the latest recorded period up to 19 May, there were 345 confirmed cases of the variant of concern VOC-21APR-02 in Bedford Borough, accounting for an estimated 90% of cases.

To help control the virus and limit its spread, surge testing in Kingsbrook, Cauldwell and Queens Park is being extended for a further week, providing more people with the opportunity to take a free PCR test to protect their friends, family and community.

With a third of people not showing symptoms of the virus, but still being able to spread it, the tests enable the virus to be identified and through self-isolating help reduce its spread.

Surge testing started last week as Bedford recorded the second highest rate per 100,000 in the country. More than 2,000 residents have visited the Mobile testing Units with a further 1,500 testing kits issued at collection and drop off points.

Mobile Testing Units will continue to be available, seven days a week at:

  • Oasis Beach Pool, Cardington Road, Kingsbrook, Bedford, MK42 0BZ (8am to 6pm)
  • John Bunyan Sports and Fitness, Mile Road, Cauldwell, Bedford, MK42 9TS (8am to 6pm)
  • Enterprise House, Old Ford End Road, Queens Park, Bedford, MK40 4PF (8am to 5pm)

The mobile testing units accept people in cars and on foot, and no appointment is necessary.
 
Alternatively collect and drop off points for PCR tests, to be carried out at home, will be available at Tesco Car Park, Cardington Road, Morrisons Car Park, Ampthill Road and Allen Park. All open every day except Bank Holiday Monday.

Visit www.bedford.gov.uk/testing for latest timings.

Cllr Louise Jackson, Portfolio Holder for Health and Wellbeing said: “With cases continuing to rise we’re asking everyone to do everything they can to drive down the spread of the virus. With a third of cases not showing any symptoms you could unknowingly pass the virus on to others.

“To identify and stop the spread we are asking everyone in Cauldwell, Kingsbrook or Queens Park to get tested. If you live in one of the surge testing areas, get a free PCR test - You can visit one of the Mobile Testing Units in these areas. Alternatively pick up a test from one of the collection and drop off points, test yourself and your family at home, register the test and return them to your collection point.

 “If you don’t live in the surge testing areas we’re encouraging everyone to carry out twice weekly rapid tests so that we can protect each other, drive down our infection rates, and safely get back to the things we’ve all missed.”

Bedford Borough Council is asking everyone to Meet up outside if you can, avoid crowded places and remember Hands-Face-Space-Fresh Air.

Anyone with symptoms of COVID-19 must self-isolate and book a test at gov.uk/coronavirus, visit the NHS COVID-19 app or call 119.