Lateral Flow Testing
The Scottish Government is working with local authorities, colleges and HEIs and other key partners to put in place a testing programme for people without the symptoms of coronavirus (asymptomatic). This is part of the package of measures to reduce the risk of coronavirus in education settings.
Why is our College participating in the programme?
Along with the other protective measures we are implementing, regular testing of staff and students will help to further reduce risks in the college environment. It will do so by helping to identify asymptomatic individuals in college environments at the earliest possible opportunity, and asking them and their close contacts to self-isolate, thus minimising the likelihood of them passing on the virus. This is expected to help enhance the confidence of our communities in a return to education.
Who can take part?
The regular testing is open to all staff and students who are regularly attending the college premises.
If you are studying at home, and not attending college, you should not participate. This is because the goal of the programme is to minimise the risks of COVID-19 in the college environment.
Do I have to take part?
Testing is voluntary. No-one who is otherwise permitted to come to college will be prevented from doing so just because they do not wish to participate. However, we are strongly encouraging all staff and students to participate wherever possible, in order to contribute to the wellbeing of our college community. If you wish to take part, please read the privacy notice carefully, and sign and return the student consent form, or if you cannot print one out then you can sign a consent form on the day.
What will the testing involve?
Our college has been provided with a supply of Lateral Flow Device (LFD) test kits for use at home. We will give each staff member and student a supply of these test kits to take home, together with the ‘Instructions for Use’. Each staff member and student will be asked to sign for these in a log at the point of handover. Completion of this test kit log is a regulatory requirement.
When will it start?
We intend to start distributing test kits to staff and students from Monday 3 May 2021. Students can go along to Room 031 in the Brahan Building between 10am and 12 noon to pick up test kits.
Each test kit holds 7 tests, so should last 3.5 weeks with tests carried out twice a week with 3-4 days between each test. Details on the specific test kit given to each student is logged on a central register and details of how long we will hold that data is in the privacy notice.
Please ensure you observe physical distancing and wear face coverings when attending for these purposes.
Staff and students should then begin regular testing as soon as possible.
We will continue to support and communicate with our staff, students and college communities as we implement this programme. Some Frequently Asked Questions, can be found below.
Existing testing arrangements
The asymptomatic testing programme does not replace the current testing policy for those with symptoms. Staff and students who experience symptoms of coronavirus must self-isolate immediately and arrange a PCR test at www.gov.uk/get-coronavirus-test. People with symptoms must not rely on a negative LFD result to continue to attend college.
Individuals and institutions involved in this programme include all college/HEI staff and students.
Staff include teachers, lecturers, classroom-based support staff, administrative staff, facilities management staff (cleaners, janitors, etc), transport staff and other staff who attend campus regularly and are critical to the effective delivery of education.
If staff are working from home, and not attending the setting, they should not participate. This is because the goal of the programme is to minimise the risks of COVID-19 in the campus environment.