More Covid testing plan to give Jersey 'summer of freedom'

As well as tests for symptomatic patients and incoming travellers, there will also be a new self-swab regime for places like nursing homes. Credit: PA Images

Jersey is changing its coronavirus testing programme.

As well as tests for symptomatic patients and incoming travellers, there will also be a new self-swab regime for places like nursing homes, and a new community testing programme to replace workforce screening.

We look forward to enjoying a summer of freedom compared to the restrictions we have followed. Due to these increased freedoms, it is vital that any potential spread in the community is limited and controlled. The way to achieve this, is through regular, widespread testing.

Senator John Le Fondré, Jersey's Chief Minister

Free Lateral Flow Tests (LFT) kits will be available for all staff within businesses which fall under the following sectors:

  • Hospitality

  • Retail

  • Agriculture and fisheries

  • Wellbeing, cosmetic and beauty

  • Public transport, freight, postal and delivery services

  • Early Years, including children’s social workers

  • Vets

A campaign will be launched next month to encourage eligible businesses to register onto the LFT Community Testing programme.

Vital services including the States of Jersey Police, Jersey Fire and Rescue, Family Nursing and Home Care, GPs, Ambulance service, Health and Community staff, care home staff and dentists are also protected with a new, peer-to-peer testing regime which offers accurate, lab based test results to ensure the continuation of public safety and service provision.

At least 30% of Covid-19 cases are asymptomatic. And patients who go onto to be symptomatic can also transmit infection before they develop symptoms. Active case finding is a vital tool in the management of all infections and therefore features strongly in Jersey’s defence against Covid.

Dr Ivan Muscat, Jersey's Deputy Medical Officer of Health