Information updated: Monday 8 February 2021
The surge testing for the selected parts of Goldsworth Park, St Johns and Knaphill is now complete. Thank you to all residents who took part in this important public health testing programme.
Frequently asked questions
My test(s) have not been collected, what should I do with my test(s)? Any test not collected at this point can be taken to the mobile testing unit (MTU) in Goldsworth Park until Thursday 11 February from 9am to 3pm. The MTU is set up in the Recreation Ground Car Park at the end of Wishbone Way, opposite Goldwater Lodge.
When should I receive my results? Most people will get their results the next day but it may take up to three days.
Why haven’t I had my results? If you haven’t received your results by day six, please call the NHS on 119 which is open between 7am to 11pm.
Who can I call to find out my result? Please call 119. The NHS will be able to provide your test result as long as it was registered, or you took note of your barcode number.
What if my result comes back as inconclusive? You will need to be re-tested, we suggest you go to the mobile testing unit in Woking which is open until Thursday 11 February between 9am and 3pm.
What happens next? The data will then be analysed by PHE and we await further guidance on the next steps. You should carry on as normal in line with the Government Coronavirus restrictions.
What is happening?
The Surrey Local Resilience Forum (SLRF) is working with Public Health England (PHE) and the Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) to carry out a localised COVID-19 testing programme within selected parts of Goldsworth Park, St Johns and Knaphill.
Residents outside of the selected area do not need to take any action, except continue to follow the national lockdown 'Stay At Home' restrictions which have been in place across England since the start of January 2021.
The Surrey Local Resilience Forum has been working on the COVID-19 response for Surrey since March 2020 and is made up of local partners including Surrey County Council, Surrey Police, district and borough councils (including Woking Borough Council), Surrey Fire and Rescue Service, local health services, volunteer organisations and others.
Why is a localised COVID-19 testing programme necessary?
This follows notification that a different variant of COVID-19 has been identified from two positive tests within the local area. This is known as the SARS-CoV-2 variant which originated in South Africa.
There is currently no evidence that the SARS-CoV-2 variant poses any greater risk to public health.
Residents within the selected parts of Goldsworth Park, St Johns and Knaphill will be visited by a member of the local testing team who will leave enough testing kits for everyone in their household to complete a test.
All members of a household, aged 18 and over, are requested to carry out a COVID-19 PCR test (Polymerase Chain Reaction), whether they have symptoms or not. A PCR test is taken in the usual way using a swab.
The testing programme will enable PHE and the Joint Biosecurity Centre to identify any community spread of the new variant. Enabling closer monitoring of the variant in order to stamp it out where it has been detected.
The distribution of testing kits started on Tuesday Monday 2 February and the roll-out finished on Saturday 6 February.
Surge testing latest updates
Find out if you live in the testing area
The map below shows the area where the localised testing programme will be carried out.
Type in your postcode to check whether you live in the localised testing area.
What will happen if I live in the selected testing area?
Your home will be visited by members of the local testing team, which will undertake a contactless drop off of testing kits. All household members over 18 years old are requested to completed a test.
At the same time, the team will arrange a time to collect the completed tests from your doorstep. Again, via a contactless pick up.
If you live in the selected Woking testing area, please follow the guidance below.
- You DO NOT need to travel to a testing site or book a test.
- The test is FREE, you will NOT be asked to pay or provide any financial information.
- The testing kits will be delivered to and collected from your doorstep by a team of Woking Borough Council volunteers, or an approved partner. Everyone delivering tests should be carrying ID and you can ask to see this.
- You will receive enough testing kits for your household. Each envelope will contain a testing kit, instructions and a box. The box is for you to construct and place your completed tests in for collection by us.
- You will be provided with instructions on how to register, carry out and repackage each test - please read more guidance further down this webpage.
- You will need to test yourself and all others aged 18 or over in your household.
- The testing team will NOT be able to complete the testing for you and they DO NOT need to enter your home.
- The testing team will return later in the day to collect the completed kits. Your sample will be taken to a laboratory so it can be tested for the variant.
- If a member of your household has been unable to complete the test when the testing team returns to collect it, please inform the testing team.
- Please don't call your GP as they will not have access to these results.
- If you test positive as a result of this localised surge testing you will be communicated with through the usual NHS Test and Trace routes. You will need to self-isolate for 10 days in the same way you would with any COVID positive result. There is no need to do anything different when testing positive to this variant as you would with a COVID-19 positive result.
For those who are unable to take the test themselves or key workers who cannot be reached on a weekday, a mobile testing unit (MTU) is up and running based in Goldsworth Park Recreation Ground Car Park, located at the end of Wishbone Way, opposite Goldwater Lodge.
Please do not attend if you do not need to - we will visit your home in the coming days.
Businesses, care settings, schools and other settings in and around the affected area will be contacted if impacted.
Protect yourself from doorstep scammers
We are very mindful that we don't want to alarm elderly residents when going door to door with testing kits, and acutely aware that some members of the community have been trying to scam our residents during the pandemic. We are also aware that many vulnerable residents may be feeling anxious at this time. With this in mind:
- Testing kits will be delivered to and collected from your doorstep by a team of Woking Borough Council volunteers, or an approved partner. Everyone delivering tests should be carrying ID and you can ask to see this.
- Every kit delivered is delivered with a joint letter from Woking Borough Council and Surrey County Council clearly explaining why they are calling.
- The test is FREE, you will NOT be asked to pay or provide any financial information.
- The testing team will not be able to complete the testing for you and they DO NOT need to enter your household.
Residents are offered the chance to phone the Community Helpline 0300 200 1008 or Woking Borough Council on 01483 755 855 to check the validity of the caller.
How to register your PCR test
You MUST register your test online or over the phone. Residents who does not register will not receive their test results.
If you’re testing more than one person in your household, you must register each person’s kit individually.
Only register your kit just before you take your test.
Questions about registering kits?
If you are having problems registering your testing kit online you can phone 0300 561 2508 or 0300 561 2509.
Clarity around the 'Stay At Home' message for the selected testing area
To avoid confusion, it is important to stress that if you live in the Woking surge testing area, national restrictions remain the same as they have been since the lockdown began on the 4 January 2021. It is essential that we all follow the Government advice to stay home and limit social contact with other households (or those outside your bubble) except:
- to shop for basic necessities
- to go to work if you can't work from home
- for exercise, with your household, bubble or just you and one other person
- to seek medical assistance or to avoid risk of harm
- to meet your support bubble or childcare bubble
- to attend education or childcare if you are eligible.
If you have symptoms, you must stay home and book a test via the NHS website or 119.
The national guidelines remain the same
Approximately 1 in 3 people who have COVID-19 have no symptoms and could be spreading it without realising it. Stay home wherever possible.
Remember: Hands. Face. Space.
- Hands – wash your hands regularly and for at least 20 seconds.
- Face – wear a face covering in indoor settings where social distancing may be difficult, and where you will come into contact with people you do not normally meet.
- Space – stay 2 metres apart from people you do not live with where possible, or 1 metre with extra precautions in place (such as wearing face coverings).
Questions you may have about the South African variant
How many cases of the SARS-CoV-2 variant VOC202012/02 have been detected in the UK?
As of 30 January 2021, 105 genomically confirmed cases of the SARS-CoV-2 variant which originated in South Africa (called VOC202012/02 in the UK,) have been identified in the UK.
What is being done to detect the variant?
Laboratory work has begun on the VOC 202012/02 in the UK and is routinely undertaken on all variants under investigation or of concern once samples are available.
What further information can you provide us about the cases?
The identity of the cases is confidential, and we cannot provide any further information.
What can I do to prevent further spread?
The best way to stop the spread of the virus is to wash your hands, wear a face covering and keep your distance from others. Whilst in lockdown, it is important that we also stay at home unless it is absolutely essential to go out
Am I going to be at greater risk?
There is no suggestion that you are at any greater risk from the South African variant to other strains of Covid-19.
Is there anything I need to do differently / stop doing?
You should continue to follow the national lockdown rules, hands, face, space and travel only when it is essential.
Does the South African variant have the same transmission rate?
Viruses often evolve and this is not unusual. We know that this variant is more transmissible. We are carrying out work as a priority to understand the potential risk this variant may cause.
Is it more harmful?
There is no suggestion that the South African variant is any more harmful that other Covid-19 variants.
Does the COVID vaccine protect against this variant?
There is currently no evidence to suggest that vaccines will not offer protection against this variant.
Questions you may have about the localised testing programme
Do I need to self-isolate if I live in the selected testing area?
Residents in the affected area do not need to self-isolate unless they have symptoms, have tested positive and/or been in contact with someone who has tested positive and been contacted by Test and Trace.
Residents in the affected area and across Woking, should remain calm and continue to follow the national restrictions that are currently in place.
What is a PCR test?
Polymerase chain reaction (PCR) tests check for the genetic material (RNA) of the virus in the sample. The sample is tested in a laboratory.
I have recently had a PCR / LFD test, do I need another?
Yes, because this sample is specifically being genome sequenced for the variant.
How will I receive my results?
You'll usually get a text or email with your result when it's ready. Most people get their result the next day, but it may take up to 3 days.
What should I do if I develop symptoms after the test?
If you have symptoms of COVID-19 (a high temperature, a new and persistent cough or a loss or change to your sense of smell or taste), however mild, you should self-isolate for at least 10 days from when your symptoms started.
You should also get a test straight away through the NHS Test and Trace Service by calling 119 or visiting www.gov.uk/get-coronavirus-test .
Once you have received your test result, you should follow the guidance on test results.
Should I still attend my vaccination appointment?
If residents being asked to take a test have a vaccination appointment they can still attend, unless they have any COVID-19 symptoms, in which case they should follow national public health guidelines.
I am an essential worker, can I go to work whilst awaiting my results?
Yes. If you develop symptoms you must self-isolate.
Why are you only testing people aged over 18?
We are testing as many people as possible over the age of 18 in the local area at this stage. This testing is offered over and above the existing testing strategy and will help us decide if further testing is needed.
What if I have recently travelled back to the UK from South Africa?
Since 23 December 2020 anyone who has been in or transited through South Africa has been required to self-isolate for 10 days since the day after the date on which they left South Africa. Members of their household are also required to self-isolate during that time too. You should continue to follow the current GOV.UK national lockdown guidelines.
You will only be required to take a test if:
- you are in a localised surge testing area, or
- you experience the symptoms of a high temperature, a new, continuous cough, a loss of, or change to, your sense of smell or taste.
Questions you may have if you are working out in the community
Do I need to take any extra precautions?
No. Continue to adopt the same level of precautions (hands, face, space) that you do now. We will keep the situation under review and will keep you informed of any changes.
Do current PPE protocols remain the same?
Yes, there are no changes at this time to PPE protocols and staff should continue to use the same level of PPE as they would usually use, as set out in national guidance.
Do I need to wear PPE / extra PPE / different PPE?
If you usually wear PPE for your work you should continue to wear the same levels of PPE as you do now. We will keep the situation under review and will keep you informed of any changes.
Should I stop visiting patients / clients in that area?
Community: Continue to undertake home visits as you do now and adopt the same precautions and wear the same level of PPE. We will keep the situation under review and will keep you informed of any changes.
Hospital/GPs: Local protocols are being developed for residents from this area who attend emergency departments, trauma units and GPs surgeries and these will be shared with you.
What happens if a patient I am visiting / had contact with tests positive to the South African variant ?
Regardless of variant, if you are a close contact of a positive COVID-19 case you should be contacted by NHS Test and Trace and should isolate for 10 days from the date you were last in contact with the positive case.
Do I need to be tested/have regular tests if I have been in contact with people who live in this area?
If you have symptoms of COVID-19 you should isolate for 10 days and book a test as soon as possible. If you are a close contact of a positive COVID-19 case you should be contacted by NHS Test and Trace and should isolate for 10 days from the date you were last in contact with the positive case.
Do I need to self-isolate if I have been in contact with someone from this area?
You only need to self-isolate if you or they have symptoms, have tested positive or been contacted by Test and Trace.
Will people from this area who attend emergency departments, trauma centres or GPs surgeries be treated any differently?
Local protocols are being developed by NHS Trusts / PCTs for residents from this area who attend emergency departments, trauma units and GP surgeries. These will be shared with you.
Do we need to make any changes to the management plan for treating those patients confirmed to have this variant?
There is currently no need to make changes to the management plan for those treating patients with this variant.
Who can I contact if I have further questions?
You can phone the Surrey Community Helpline on 0300 200 1008, Monday to Friday between 9am to 5pm, and weekends between 11am to 3pm.
SMS: 0786 0053 465 for deaf and hearing impaired residents only, available Monday to Friday between 9am to 5pm.