This is what the change to PCR testing means for the future of Lancashire's Covid test sites

PCR tests are no longer required for those without symptoms following a positive lateral flow test - but what does this mean for the future of Lancashire's testing sites? Could they close? This is what Lancashire County Council says about the future of the sites...

By Matthew Calderbank
Friday, 14th January 2022, 2:40 pm
Updated Friday, 14th January 2022, 3:05 pm

What are the changes?

Since the rules were changed on Tuesday (January 11), people who receive positive lateral flow test results are required to self-isolate immediately but are no longer required to take a follow-up PCR test.

The Government says this is a temporary measure to help manage demand for PCR tests and ensure there is a ready supply 'priority groups' who need them most, including essential workers such as NHS staff, teachers and transport staff.

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Members of the public who experience Covid-like symptoms can still get a PCR at one of Lancashire's test sites, which remain open as normal

But members of the public who experience Covid-like symptoms can still get a PCR at one of Lancashire's test sites, which remain open as normal.

What does it mean for Lancashire's test sites? Could they close?

The rule change has led to reduced demand at some testing sites in Lancashire, but the County Council says it has no plans to close sites or reduce opening hours at this stage.

However, the Council has not ruled out shutting test sites in the future. It says the free service will be kept 'under review' and "decisions may be made to adapt to current need and demand in the future".

The Covid PCR testing site at the South Ribble Borough Council offices in West Paddock, Leyland

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This is what Lancashire County Council says about the future of its PCR test sites

A spokesman for Lancashire County Council said: "No PCR testing sites in Lancashire have closed as a result of the temporary suspension of the confirmatory testing.

"Members of the public who experience Covid-like symptoms can still get a PCR at one of Lancashire's test sites.

The rule change has led to reduced demand at some testing sites in Lancashire, but the County Council says it has no plans to close sites or reduce opening hours at this stage

"The testing regime is constantly kept under review and decisions may be made in the future to adapt to current need and demand.

"If you require a PCR test, visit https://www.gov.uk/get-coronavirus-test to find your nearest test site."

Where can you get a PCR test in Lancashire?

You can find a full list of Lancashire's test site locations here.