Home kits were offered to firms with more than 10 employees from 6 April, where on-site testing was not possible.
Businesses had to register by 12 April for the lateral flow tests, which can give results in less than 30 minutes, and they are free until 30 June.
The hope is that asymptomatic cases can be detected quickly, helping to prevent workplace outbreaks. The wider availability of the rapid flow tests is part of government policy to ensure all kinds of workplaces are able to operate safely as we move closer to removing almost all restrictions on 20th June.
The schools testing programme - in which pupils, their family members and staff at secondary schools and colleges are tested twice a week - combined with the wider use of workplace testing, has seen the total number of Covid tests carried out in the UK jump.
There were about 500,000 tests a day in mid-February - whereas in a couple days in March this figure had jumped up to more than 1.8 million.
Initially, only businesses with 250 or more employees were eligible to access lateral flow tests. However, in March it was made available to all businesses and this has now been extended to home testing.
Along with 60,000 other businesses ANT Telecom registered for the scheme to keep staff and our customers and suppliers as safe as possible and to minimise the risk of any outbreaks within the office. As we are working with customers providing essential services such as the NHS, our service team especially had to support our customers throughout the pandemic. It therefore has been and is important to us to ensure we can provide these services in the safest possible way.
Managing Director Paul Smith explains “although things are improving it is still a very worrying fact that around 1 in 3 people with COVID-19 show no symptoms, so anyone could be spreading it without knowing. Regular testing helps identify staff who may be carrying the virus without displaying symptoms, reducing the risk of transmission”.
In order to reassurance staff, customers and to encourage other businesses to continue testing staff, ANT Telecom also registered recently for “We offer Covid-19 testing to our staff endorsement scheme”. It is a simple and free voluntary promotional scheme for firms who are participating in the government’s free COVID-19 workplace testing programme and offers regular twice weekly testing to their staff.
As Smith continues “the more people that regularly test the better it will be for all of us as it will enable swift action and that is why it is so important. We were happy to sign up to scheme to help promote what we are doing and encourage other businesses to do the same. Only together can we really make a real impact in order to keep transmission rates low and under control”.
As part of a nationally recognised scheme, displaying either a physical and/or virtual sticker offers employees and customers greater reassurance and confidence that participating firms are going above and beyond their workplace legal duties.