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Mobile testing units announced in Diss and Roydon after South African variant outbreak

Mobile testing units will be operating in Diss and Roydon from Friday, following the council’s plea for everyone in the area to get tested.

A letter signed by Dr Louise Smith, director of public health at Norfolk County Council, will also be sent out to every household in the area urging people to visit the testing units on Friday – irrespective of whether they have symptoms or not.

The drive for ’surge testing’ comes after it was revealed last night that there had been a handful of cases of the South African coronavirus variant in the two parishes.

The three mobile testing units will be at:

  • Diss Youth and Community Centre, Shelfanger Road (from 19 February to 25 February 09:00 – 15:00)
  • Roydon Village Hall, High Road (from 19 February to 04 March 12:00 – 18:00)
  • Diss Leisure Centre, Victoria Road (from 19 February to 04 March 09:00 – 15:00)

From Friday, residents will also be able to pick up and drop off a testing kit from the below places, with no appointment needed.

All kits can be completed at home and returned through a post box.

  • Midwich Ltd, Vince's Rd, Diss IP22 4YT (09.00 – 19.00)
  • Outside Roydon White Hart / Roydon Church (09.00 – 19.00)

All residents over the age of 16 are being strongly encouraged to get tested through one of these two methods.

In the Dr Smith’s letter, which will be arriving on people’s doormats tomorrow morning, she urged residents not to worry.

She said: “I’d like to ask for your help. A very small number of South Africa variant cases of Covid-19 have been found in the Diss area.

"We would like to test as many adults living or working in Diss and Roydon parishes as soon as possible. We call this testing approach ‘surge testing’ and we do this to see if the variant is more widely spread in the community.

"Norfolk County Council and South Norfolk District Council are working with NHS Test and Trace to offer a COVID-19 test to all residents in the area over the next two weeks.

"Overall, the number of cases in South Norfolk is falling and there is no reason for local people to be worried by this increased testing. There is no evidence that this variant causes more severe illness than others.

"The most important thing is that people continue to follow the guidance that is in place: limit your number of contacts, wash your hands regularly for at least 20 seconds, keep your distance, cover your face and stick to the lockdown rules."

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