Some people with coronavirus symptoms in Cumbria have been unable to book a test, as demand soars with schools and workplaces returning.
Cumbria County Council say they are working to increase both the number of public test centres and the overall number of tests available each day, but ask people that don’t need to be tested to stay home.
It comes as figures show more than 7,000 people in the county have been tested for Covid-19 since the start of the pandemic.
The council is reminding people to get tested if they have the specific COVID-19 symptoms – high temperature, new persistent cough, loss of sense of taste or smell – to reduce demand and ensure tests are available for those that need them.
Colin Cox, Cumbria’s Director of Public Health, said:“While testing capacity is increasing it hasn’t yet caught up with the big increase in demand caused by pupils going back to school and people heading back to the workplace. That’s why it’s really important that testing capacity isn’t taken up by people that don’t need to be tested.
“As we head into autumn colds, sore throats and runny noses will all become more common, but they are not a reason to get a COVID-19 test.
"People need to look out for one or more of the key symptoms – high temperature, new persistent cough or loss of sense of taste or smell – and only then get tested, or if advised to by a health professional.
“Nationally we are seeing a steady increase in the number of new cases each day. Some of that was to be expected as society opened back up again, but people must continue to follow the guidance to keep the infection rate at a manageable level.”