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Slough's young people urged to take COVID-19 tests

Young people in Slough are being encouraged by the council to take COVID-19 tests.

At the first-ever Slough Outbreak Engagement Board, held remotely on Wednesday, Slough councillors and public health figures discussed the borough's COVID-19 response.

At the meeting, members were told how the number of people using the testing centre in Montem Car Park had risen to an average of 300 a day, and discussed how young people in particular should be encouraged to take tests.

Speaking at the meeting, Dr Liz Brutus, service lead for public health, said: “It is really vital that we do testing and encourage testing for people as we open up our town more.

"Especially our young people because they are out and about and not always complying with social distancing."

Dr Brutus added that this would be even more crucial in multi-generational homes, which contain children, parents and grandparents. During the meeting, further advice was issued on whether people who had already received a negative test should ever return for a second time.

Dr Brutus said: “There are always going to be people that become anxious and keep coming back regularly, and we don’t want to encourage that.

“But sensible testing, if you have been exposed (to the virus) or are closer through your work situation and it has made you feel uncomfortable, or if you are particularly worried about loved ones at home, that’s the time to come back for a second test.”

Also at the meeting, members were informed that the council’s doctors were planning on running a large campaign encouraging people to get the flu jab, to reduce the strain on the NHS during the winter.

Dr Jim O’Donnell, of the NHS East Berkshire CCG, said: “We are planning a full campaign, it's a much bigger campaign than ever before, a wider range of patients.

“Planning is actively happening and quite a few of us are already involved in that already.”

The next board meeting will take place on Wednesday, September 16, unless developments in the pandemic require an earlier get-together.

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