Coronavirus testing in Oldham - this is what's changing

Residents in Oldham are being warned about major changes to accessing coronavirus testing in the borough. 

As some lockdown rules ease from today (Monday 29 March), when and where people can continue to be tested for Covid-19 has been altered. 

Testing for people with NO symptoms

For people taking part in regular testing and not showing symptoms, for example anyone who can’t work from home or care home visitors, the four current sites in Uppermill, Failsworth, Shaw and Oldham town centre leisure centre will close on Wednesday (31 March).

Instead a number of community sites, such as local pharmacies, will become the locations for people to be tested on a regular basis from Thursday 1 April (see below for more details). 

Katrina Stephens, Oldham’s Director for Public Health, said: “As part of Oldham’s wider strategy, the continuation of community testing has the potential to make a real difference to the course of the pandemic.

"It increases the chances of finding cases early, prevent the spread of the virus and reduce case rates. Keeping rates low is important in helping to avoid any future spikes in case rates and therefore the potential for lockdown measures to be reintroduced by Central Government.”

Home testing kits

Another key part of coronavirus testing is home testing. Where people eligible for family home testing can pick up free testing kits will be changing from Monday 29 March. The new locations are: Lees Library, Crompton Library, Failsworth Library, The Link Centre (Oldham Town Centre).

Those eligible for home testing include:

  • households, childcare and support bubbles of early years children, nursery children, primary and secondary-age pupils and college students
  • households, childcare and support bubbles of staff of nurseries, primary and secondary schools, and colleges
  • anyone who works in an occupation related to a childcare provider, school, nursery or college, and their household, childcare and support bubbles
  • staff of primary and secondary schools, nurseries and colleges

Secondary school children and college students have now moved from testing in schools to being given home testing kits and are being encouraged to do these at least twice a week and to record their results with their school and the national test and trace app.

Testing for people with symptoms

Oldham also has ‘PCR’ coronavirus testing facilities in at Southgate Street (in the town centre), Peel Street (Chadderton) and Honeywell Centre. PCR tests are the tests you should use if you have symptoms or are concerned that you may have coronavirus.

Free ‘PCR’ testing is available at these sites seven days a week to anyone showing symptoms or has concerns about coronavirus. There are also mobile testing sites on a regular basis around Oldham, with details available on Oldham Council’s social media feeds. 

The best way to book a slot is to go to gov.uk website, or call 119, but walk up appointments are available if the site is not busy.

If you have symptoms or suspect you may have coronavirus, you and all members of your household must self-isolate until you are able to get tested and have received your test result. If the result is positive you will need to continue to isolate in line with national guidance.

Full list of new regular testing sites for people without symptoms

Lloyds 137 Glodwick Road, Oldham, OL4 1YN

Monday 8:30am–6:30pm

Tuesday 8:30am–6:30pm

Wednesday 8:30am–6:30pm

Thursday 8:30am–6:30pm

Friday 8:30am–6:30pm

Saturday and Sunday – closed

Lloyds New Radcliffe Street, Oldham, OL1 1NL

Monday 8:15am–7pm

Tuesday 8:15am–7pm

Wednesday 8:15am–7pm

Thursday 8:15am–7pm

Friday 8:15am–7pm

Saturday 9am–7pm

Sunday 10am–4pm

Lloyds Werneth Primary Care Centre, Featherstall Road South, Oldham OL9 7AY

Monday 8:30am–6:30pm

Tuesday 8:30am–6:30pm

Wednesday 8:30am–6:30pm

Thursday 8:30am–6:30pm

Friday 8:30am–6:30pm

Saturday and Sunday Closed

Westwood Pharmacy 69-71 FEATHERSTALL ROAD OLDHAM OL9 6QB

Monday 9:30am–6:15pm

Tuesday 9:30am–6:15pm

Wednesday 9:30am–6:15pm

Thursday 9:30am–6:15pm

Friday 9:30am–6:15pm

Saturday 9:30am–12:30pm

Sunday Closed

Imaan Pharmacy 116 OXFORD STREET WERNETH OLDHAM OL9 7SJ

Monday 9am–6pm

Tuesday 9am–6pm

Wednesday 9am–6pm

Thursday 9am–6pm

Friday 9am–1pm, 2–6pm

Saturday 9am–1pm

Sunday Closed

Butler Green Pharmacy PRIMARY CARE CENTRE FIELDS NEW ROAD CHADDERTON OLDHAM OL9 8NH

Monday 9am–6pm

Tuesday 9am–6pm

Wednesday 9am–6pm

Thursday 9am–6pm

Friday 9am–6pm

Saturday and Sunday Closed

LOMAS PHARMACY 586 ASHTON ROAD OLDHAM OL8 3HW 

Monday 9am–6pm

Tuesday 9am–6pm

Wednesday 9am–6pm

Thursday 9am–6pm

Friday 9am–6pm

Saturday Closed

Sunday Closed

GARDNERS CHEMIST 285 ROCHDALE ROAD OLDHAM  OL1 2HG

Monday 9am–6pm

Tuesday 9am–6pm

Wednesday 9am–6pm

Thursday 9am–6pm

Friday 9am–6pm

Saturday and Sunday Closed

YATES PHARMACY 733-735 HOLLINS ROAD OLDHAM OL8 3SY

Monday 9am-6pm

Tuesday 9am-6pm

Wednesday 9am-6pm

Thursday 9am-6pm

Friday 9am-6pm

Saturday and Sunday Closed

Rose Medical ST CHADS PHARMACY ST CHADS CENTRE LIME GREEN PARADE LIMEHURST OLDHAM OL8 3HH

Monday 9am-6pm

Tuesday 9am-6pm

Wednesday 9am-6pm

Thursday 9am-6pm

Friday 9am-6pm

Saturday 9am-1pm

Sunday Closed

'Regular asymptomatic testing is vital weapon in our armoury' 

Katrina Stephens said: “One in three people with coronavirus do not have any symptoms and so can pass on the virus without knowing it. Regular testing for people who do not have symptoms is therefore a vital weapon in our armoury in the fight against the virus.

“But to get the most out of it, uptake of testing and compliance with self-isolation need to be high. That is why isolating if you have symptoms or a positive test or have been in close contact with someone who has tested positive is so important. The more people test, and the more positive cases and their contacts isolate, the more we break the chains of transmission and stop the virus from spreading.

“Even if people have had a vaccination, we are still asking them to have regular tests as there is still a risk that they can catch and spread the virus.

“Vulnerable people, including people that need assistance with swabbing, can also access any of these new community sites for support.

“And when people are showing symptoms, they must get a PCR test as soon as possible and look to follow the guidance on self-isolation. We know that self-isolation can be difficult but there is help available.”

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