Community testing for people who are not showing signs of coronavirus has begun in Bridgend County Borough.
The first testing centre will target people living in Cefn Cribwr, Pyle, Kenfig Hill and Cornelly, and will be set up at the Kenfig Hill Rugby and Football Club from Wednesday 3 March to Tuesday 9 March.
With no booking necessary, the walk-in centres will be available between 9.30am-6.30pm Monday to Friday, and 10am-4pm on Saturdays and Sundays.
The initiative aims to identify people living within specific local communities who may have the virus without knowing it. Statistics from Public Health Wales confirm that one in three people may not display any symptoms when infected with Covid-19, and may be passing the virus on to others.
The areas targeted for testing, which have been identified using data from Public Health Wales and Cwm Taf Morgannwg University Health Board, are Caerau, Nantyffyllon, Pyle, Kenfig Hill, Cornelly, Cefn Cribwr, Sarn, Aberkenfig, Coytrahen, Ynysawdre, Bryncethin, Bryncoch, Pencoed, Hendre, Felindre and Heol-Y-Cyw.
To support these areas, a number of local testing centres are being set up, and testing will take place at the Kenfig Hill Rugby and Football Club from Wednesday 3 March – Tuesday 9 March, at Pencoed Social Club from Wednesday 10 March – Tuesday 16 March, at Tondu Cricket Club from Wednesday 17 March – Tuesday 23 March, and at a final location which is still being confirmed in Caerau between Wednesday 24 March – Wednesday 31 March.
Residents who are aged 11 and over are being encouraged to come in for a swab test. The tests are fast, efficient and no booking is required. They are targeting people who are not already exhibiting symptoms of the virus, and who feel otherwise fit and well.
As it is possible for people who have been vaccinated to still carry the virus, the testing includes residents who may have already undergone a test or who have received a dose of the vaccine.
Anyone attending the centre should not eat for at least 30 minutes before taking the test. At the centres, staff will show people to booths where they can carry out a swab test. As the swab will be processed upon the premises, participants will be contacted within 30 minutes with the results.
If a positive result is recorded, the participant will be asked to self-isolate while arrangements are made for them to receive a confirmatory test along with further advice and support.
The Leader, Cllr Huw David said: “We have all made huge efforts in fighting the spread of coronavirus, and with the vaccination programme well underway, huge progress is being made.
“Community testing forms an important part of this. Using data provided by Public Health Wales, it is intended to locate people in specific areas who may have coronavirus without even knowing it, and who may be unwittingly spreading it to their friends, family, neighbours, work colleagues and more.
“We need as many people as possible to take part, and I urge residents to support these efforts, and to do their bit to help eradicate the coronavirus once and for all in Bridgend County Borough.”
For more information about the community testing programme, please visit www.bridgend.gov.uk/CommunityTesting