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10 Aug 2022

Location changed for Offaly's walk-in Covid-19 test centre

Location changed for Offaly's walk-in Covid-19 test centre

The HSE has changed the location of a Covid-19 walk-in text centre set to open in Tullamore on Thursday. 

The walk-in testing centre will open at the Aura Leisure Centre on the Portarlington Road. It had originally been due to operate from Spollens carpark in the town.

The centre at Aura will open on Thursday, March 25 for one week until March 31 from 11am to 7pm each day.

The HSE local Community Healthcare Organisation (CHO) working with the National Ambulance Service aim to carry out 300-500 Covid-19 tests per day at the centre.

“I am delighted that Tullamore is one of the towns chosen for a ‘walk-in, no appointment necessary’ COVID-19 testing centre” said Dr Una Fallon, Director of Public Health Midlands.

“This will provide an opportunity for those who may not have symptoms but who suspect, for whatever reason, that they may have COVID-19. It will provide easy access to testing for our vulnerable communities,” explained Dr Fallon.

The criteria for the free walk-in COVID-19 testing service are:

· Aged 16 years and over

· Do not have symptoms of Covid-19 but would like to be tested

· May not have your own GP Live within 5K of the walk-in testing centre.

Process for Referral:

Each person presenting will be requested to provide ID e.g. 

· A valid passport (passport book or passport card)

· A current driving licence (Irish, UK, EU, US)

· A Public Services Card

· A National Age Card (issued by An Garda Síochána)

· An identification form with a photograph signed by a member of An Garda Síochána

· Free Travel Pass

· A valid student identity card issued by an educational institution

· A bank card

Mr Des O’Flynn, Chief Officer, HSE Midlands Louth Meath, explained that the temporary walk-in centre will allow people, who don’t have symptoms of COVID-19 to get a free COVID-19 test without having to contact their GP first. Currently around 1 in 5 people have COVID-19 without having any symptoms.

“Testing people with no symptoms will help find positive cases earlier and allow these people take the necessary action to protect others. This will help us break chains of transmission” he added. 

Members of the public will need to bring with them photographic ID and provide a mobile phone number in order to provide test results. The normal social distancing measures will apply and people have the option to return at another day or time if the waiting times are too long.

The public are being advised that they should not attend the walk-in clinic if they are showing symptoms (high temperature, a new cough, shortness of breath or a loss or change to sense of smell or taste) of COVID-19.  

The HSE are continuing to advise people with these symptoms to self-isolate and phone their GP straight away, who will advise if they need a free COVID-19 test.

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