Surge testing to be deployed in Birmingham

Working in partnership with the local authority, NHS Test and Trace is providing additional testing and genomic sequencing in a targeted area within the Alum Rock and Glebe Farm and Tile Cross wards in Birmingham, where a confirmed case of the variant first identified in South Africa has been found.

The confirmed case has self-isolated and their contacts have been identified. Initial investigations indicate that this case is not linked to a case previously identified in the Birmingham and Sandwell areas.

This targeted approach will contact certain households in the Alum Rock and Glebe Farm and Tile Cross areas of Birmingham. Everybody aged 16 years and over in this area who is contacted and invited to take part is strongly encouraged to take a COVID-19 PCR test, whether they are showing symptoms or not.

Enhanced contact tracing will be used for individuals testing positive with a variant of concern. This is where contact tracers look back over an extended period in order to determine the route of transmission.

By using PCR testing, positive results can be sent for genomic sequencing at specialist laboratories, helping us to identify variant of concern cases and their spread.

People with symptoms should book a free test online or by phone so they can get tested at a testing site or have a testing kit sent to them at home. Those without symptoms should visit the local authority website f

/Public Release. This material comes from the originating organization and may be of a point-in-time nature, edited for clarity, style and length. View in full here.