Residents are encouraged to get a test twice a week as new COVID Test and Collect Centre opens in Hartlepool

Published Tuesday, 4th May 2021

A new COVID Test and Collect Centre opened today in Hartlepool, replacing the existing Community COVID Testing Centre at Mill House Leisure Centre.

The Government is encouraging all adults to get tested twice a week - even after they have been vaccinated - to help the country on the path back to normal life.

The new centre is in Middleton Grange Shopping Centre, on the ground floor just along from WHSmith and directly opposite the Vodafone shop, and is open Mondays to Fridays (excluding Bank Holidays) from 9am to 5pm.

COVID Test and Collect Centre

If you are aged 18 or over and live or work in Hartlepool and you DON'T have COVID symptoms, you can use the centre to:

Get a free test at the centre - Tests should be booked in advance. You can find out more and book a test now at www.hartlepool.gov.uk/covid-test-and-collect or by calling 01429 523330 during normal office hours.

The test is simple and quick - you will be given a swab and sent to a sample collection booth. You will be asked to take a swab of your tonsils (or where they would have been at the back of your throat) as well as one nostril. It’s simple to do and trained staff will be on hand to explain to you how to do it.

Collect a free kit to test yourself and your family for COVID at home - You can collect up to 2 packs of 7 tests - no booking is required - just drop in. The staff at the centre will advise you on how to use the testing kit safely and to avoid a false result and will happily take you through a test to make sure you know how to do it.

In both cases you will get your result by text within 24 hours, and in most cases within an hour. You will also be given advice on what to do if your test comes back positive.

The Test and Collect Centre is only for people who don’t have COVID symptoms. You must not come to the centre if you have any of the COVID symptoms, including:

  • a high temperature.
  • a new, continuous cough.
  • a loss of, or change to, your sense of smell or taste.

If you have any COVID symptoms you must self-isolate and book a different test straight away at www.gov.uk/get-coronavirus-test or by calling 119.

Alongside the national vaccine roll-out, regular testing is an essential part of the easing of restrictions, helping identify variants of the virus and stopping individual cases from becoming outbreaks. 

Particularly encouraged to get regularly tested are those people who come into a lot of direct contact with other people - for example taxi drivers, supermarket and other shop staff, tradespeople, takeaway staff, carers, social workers and nursery staff. 

Craig Blundred, Hartlepool Borough Council's Director of Public Health, said: "Around 1 in 3 people with COVID-19 do not experience any symptoms and may be spreading the virus unwittingly.

“Rapid testing detects cases quickly, meaning positive cases can isolate immediately, and by making rapid tests available to everyone, more cases will be detected, breaking chains of transmission and saving lives.

"However, it’s important to remember that there’s no single silver bullet in the fight against COVID-19 – we must all still continue to follow the current social distancing guidelines – hands, face, space, fresh air, and go for our vaccinations when called."