COVID-19 asymptomatic testing programme
Asymptomatic Testing Programmes are being put in place as part of the package of COVID-19 risk reduction mitigations in colleges across Scotland.
Along with the other protective measures we are implementing to keep our community safe, regular testing of staff and students will help to further reduce risks on our campuses.
Voluntary COVID-19 Lateral Flow Device Testing will be available for staff and students returning to campus from April 2021.
Frequently Asked Questions
The Scottish Government is working with colleges 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 transmission of coronavirus in education settings.
The programme will help to identify asymptomatic individuals in educational environments or settings at the earliest possible opportunity. By asking any member of staff or student who tests positive using the LFD, and their close contacts to self-isolate, the likelihood of the virus being passed on is minimised. This is expected to help enhance the confidence of our communities in a return to education.
No, testing via lateral flow devices is voluntary. We encourage any staff and students on campus in April and May 2021 to take advantage of the testing system, however it is not mandatory.
Those returning to campus (staff and students) in April and May 2021 will be offered testing. This is on a voluntary basis and it is not a requirement of returning to campus.
If you are returning to campus in April / May 2021, you'll help keep everyone safe by doing regular tests. This will help decrease the chance of non-symptomatic people transmitting COVID-19.
If you are on campus in April / May 2021, you will be offered the opportunity to be tested. We will contact you about registering to get your tests. All staff and students who are on campus will be offered tests.
If you are not returning to campus you can access asymptomatic testing through the community testing centres. If you live in Tayside you can find out the locations of Community Testing for COVID-19 for people with no symptoms.
If you've had a positive PCR test in the past 90 days then you should not participate in LFD testing. If you've not been tested before, or if you have previously tested negative, or previously tested positive more than 90 days ago then you can do an LFD.
The tests are done with what is called a Lateral Flow Device, a rapid antigen test which does not require a lab and produces results very quickly (30 minutes). The process is self-administered and you should test yourself twice weekly with 3 or 4 days gap between testing. You will be issued with a box of tests, which you will self-administer at home and upload the results of your test via an app. There will be instructions on how to do this when you are issued with the test packs. The test is a throat and/or nose swab, it is not painful and does not involve any needles or drawing of blood. It should only take around 10 minutes to take each of the tests and 30 minutes for the results.
An LFD at-home test detects the coronavirus antigen (protein) that is produced when a person is infected with coronavirus by applying a swab from the nose and throat to a special test kit. These tests are fast and simple: they produce a result in 30 minutes that is easy to interpret and does not require a laboratory to be processed. Comprehensive guidance on self-testing is covered in the “Instructions for Use” (IFU) which will be issued with test kits and there is also a step-by-step video guide available further down this page.
If you wish to participate you will take test kits home and, following the instructions for use, perform the tests on yourself (or with the support of a parent or guardian if you are under 16 years), twice weekly. You will then register positive, negative and void results on a web-based portal, with the results are shared with NHS Test and Protect. The actions that should be taken by you whether you receive a positive or negative result are clearly explained in the supporting guidance. A positive LFD test result requires a confirmatory PCR test to be taken.
Only a very small proportion of people who do not have coronavirus will receive a positive result (false positive). The tests are better at picking up true positive cases when a person has a higher viral load and is more contagious. There is a risk of returning a false negative result when viral loads are low (e.g. in the early stages of infection). This is why the Scottish Government recommend two LFD tests 3 to 4 days apart, or regular testing, to enhance detection by picking up any cases which were not detected during the first test and to catch any new infections. This is also why it is important to continue to follow FACTS guidance and sector-specific guidance on reducing risks even if you have had a negative test result.
If you receive a positive result from your LFD test at home, you must report the result online at www.gov.uk/report-covid19-result (or by calling 0300 303 2713 in Scotland), self-isolate and book a confirmatory PCR test. A PCR test can be booked via www.gov.uk/get-coronavirus-test. We advise visiting a local walk-in test site or drive through test site as this is the quickest way to get tested, or you can order a home test kit. You are also asked to advise the College if you test positive.
It is important that you, and everyone in your household or bubble, begin self-isolation immediately if you receive the positive result from the LFD test, and do not wait until the result of their PCR test.
A positive test result via LFD will feed into the Test and Protect contact tracing system and commence contact tracing for the positive case. If you have tested positive you will be offered a confirmatory PCR test.
If the PCR test result is negative, you will be contacted by Test and Protect who will advise you on what to do next. In most cases this will involve ending self-isolation and returning to College, provided you continue to have no symptoms. In some limited circumstances you may be advised by Test and Protect to continue self-isolation if a risk assessment determines this to be appropriate.
Parent/Guardian Student Consent Form
This printable Student Consent Form should be used:
- For students younger than 16 years, this form must be completed by the parent or legal guardian. Remember to complete one consent form for each child you wish to enrol.
- For students over 16 who are able to provide informed consent, this form can be completed by themselves, having discussed participation with their parent/guardian.
- For students who do not have the capacity to provide informed consent - this form must be completed by the parent or legal guardian.
If you don't have access to a printer, copies of this form are available on campus from our help points and the testing kits collection areas.
How to do a COVID-19 Self Test
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