‘Please do not visit A&E or a GP practice to ask for a test for coronavirus’ is the plea from the NHS in Leeds as it reminds people that they must book a test online or call 119.
The plea comes as a small number of people have tried visited local accident and emergency departments or contacted their GP practice solely to get a test.
Dr Sarah Davey, Consultant in Emergency Medicine at Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust, said:
“People should not come to A&E for the primary purpose of getting a Covid-19 test. A&E staff arrange tests for people who are seriously ill or injured and who need to be admitted to hospital as an emergency but we are not set up as a community testing centre. Our staff are specialists in emergency medicine; A&E does not have the right facilities to test people who have mild symptoms.”
Dr Jason Broch, Leeds GP and Clinical Chair of NHS Leeds Clinical Commissioning Group, said:
“We urge people from Leeds to not visit A&E or their GP practice if they have coronavirus symptoms. There is no testing available at either of these health services and, if you have coronavirus symptoms, you will be putting others at risk. If you have symptoms such as: a new persistent cough, a high fever or loss of smell or taste, you can book a test using the NHS online booking system (www.nhs.uk/coronavirus) or calling 119.
“We are aware that there is a high level of demand for tests. Therefore we’d like to remind people to only access a test if you have symptoms.”
People can book a test by:
- using the online booking system: www.nhs.uk/coronavirus to either attend a testing site or to order a home testing kit; or
- calling 119.
All testing sites operate on an appointment only basis, with some having limited or no parking. People are advised to check before their appointment.
Anyone with coronavirus symptoms needs to self-isolate for 10 days and anyone living in the same household needs to self-isolate for 14 days.
For more information on coronavirus visit www.nhs.uk/coronavirus
This post is based on a press release issued by Leeds NHS