Isle of Wight mobile coronavirus testing unit to open for key workers

A mobile testing unit is due to come to the island later this week, which will greatly increase the capacity to test people for Covid-19, and enable this to happen without having to travel to the mainland.

Alison Smith, managing director of NHS Isle of Wight Clinical Commissioning Group, said: “We will have a mobile testing unit to come to the island and provide tests here, on the island.

“The plans are in their final stages and we will be able to share more details with you this week once these final stages are complete.

“This is welcome news and brings reassurance that testing will be taking place on the island to help protect our keyworkers and the rest of the island's population.

“We do not want people to have to cross the Solent to have their test, which is why we have been working on a model fit for the island.

“Our keyworkers have been providing an absolutely tremendous service – often going above and beyond what is asked of them – and we want to rollout the testing as soon as possible.”

Councillor Dave Stewart, leader of the Isle of Wight Council, said: “We are working together with our key partners, the NHS and the Local Resilience Forum, to provide the opportunity to bring forward keyworker testing facilities on the Isle of Wight so that there will not be a need to travel to the mainland to access testing.

“The final details of this are being worked on, but we expect these to be available within the week.

“It is vital that our keyworkers are supported so that they can continue the truly remarkable work they've been undertaking over the past month.

“I'm sure that this progress around testing facilities on the Island will bring a huge amount of reassurance to our residents and our entire keyworker workforce across a vast array of settings, who are dedicated to caring for and supporting the most vulnerable members of our Island community.”