Workplace testing is rolled out to support Scotland’s recovery

Organisations with ten or more employees are being urged by the Scottish Government to sign up for asymptomatic workplace testing as part of an enhanced drive to identify emerging cases of coronavirus and break transmission chains. Free lateral flow device (LFD) tests have been made more widely available now that Scotland has moved beyond Level 0 and more employees are returning to their workplaces.

Asymptomatic testing had previously been targeted at prioritised areas of the public sector, national infrastructure and private businesses with higher transmission rates. The expansion of the workplace testing programme – which will initially be offered until the end of September – has been introduced in response to requests from representative bodies from a range of sectors. The testing regime is voluntary, and organisations can either adopt an LFD Collect model to distribute among staff, or implement their own asymptomatic test site (ATS) model in workplaces.

Public Health Minister Maree Todd said: “Testing has a vital role to play as we move safely out of lockdown and this rollout of workplace testing to cover all companies with 10 staff or more builds on our strategy to tackle COVID-19. The vaccination programme has been a major success, however even though you are fully vaccinated it does not guarantee that you cannot catch the virus and pass it on without knowing you have it. Asymptomatic testing will remain an important tool in breaking future chains of transmission.

“As more staff continue to return to the workplace in the months ahead, we must do all we can to ensure this is done as safely as possible. Workplace asymptomatic testing can play an important part in the recovery and organisations across our business, third and public sectors can contribute to this. It’s vital that all results are reported to ensure we understand the prevalence of the virus and halt further transmission.

“I would encourage all organisations that are eligible to sign up for workplace testing and play their part in our recovery from the pandemic.”

You can find out how to apply for workplace testing here.

Businesses and organisations with fewer than 10 employees can direct their team members to collect LFD test kits from a local pharmacy or COVID test site, or order them online for home delivery. More details on this can be found here.