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Durham University

Covid-19 Response

Lateral Flow Tests

Testing during Epiphany Term

Lateral Flow Testing will continue to be available during Epiphany Term for all staff and students. In light of lockdown, we will be reviewing national guidance to determine testing provision throughout the remainder of term and will publish details here in due course.

Opening Hours (from 25th January) - ***you must pre-book a slot***

  • Maiden Castle – daily, booking slots available from 9:30-4pm (Mon-Wed-Fri-Sat-Sun) and 12:30-7pm (Tues-Thurs)
  • Palace Green – daily, booking slots available from 9:30-7pm
  • Palatine Centre – daily, booking slots available from 9:30-4pm
  • Racecourse – closed until 26th April

Opening Hours (from 20th March to 11th April) - ***you must pre-book a slot***

  • Maiden Castle – booking slots available from 9:30-4pm (Mon-Wed-Fri)
  • Palace Green – 7 days a week, booking slots available from 9:30-4pm
  • Palatine Centre – weekdays only, booking slots available from 9:30-4pm
  • N.B. All sites closed over Easter weekend, i.e. no testing Friday 2nd to Monday 5th inclusive - resuming Tues 6th

Opening Hours (from 12th April to 25th June) - ***you must pre-book a slot***

  • Maiden Castle – 7 days a week, booking slots available from 9:30-4pm (Mon-Wed-Fri-Sat-Sun) and 12:30pm-6:30pm (Tues-Thurs)
  • Palace Green – 7 days a week, booking slots available from 9:30-6:30pm
  • Palatine Centre – 7 days a week, booking slots available from 9:30-4pm
  • Racecourse – opens w/c 26th April, 7 days a week, booking slots 9:30-4pm

The Lateral Flow Test (LFT) is one of a number of new testing technologies for the Covid-19 virus. It has been piloted over the past few months at Durham University as well as across the UK.

The aim of the test is to identify those most at risk of spreading Covid-19 by identifying those who are infectious, but not aware of this. This will enable us to break the chains of transmission and reduce the infection rate. This is not a clinical trial; the technology, developed by the University of Oxford, has already been validated through clinical testing.

The LFT is carried out on people who do not have symptoms (i.e. those who are asymptomatic). The lateral flow test will not replace symptomatic PCR testing. If you are symptomatic, you must book a PCR test here or by calling 119. You must follow government guidelines and isolate accordingly.

The initiative was developed by Durham University in partnership with the Department for Health and Social Care (DHSC), the University of Oxford, and Public Health England (PHE).

Using LFTs for mass testing

In line with the Government’s plans to use LFTs to support student travel at the end of Michaelmas Term, the University scaled up the pilot from three to twelve participating colleges and added capacity at three mass testing sites at Palace Green, the Palatine Centre, and Maiden Castle. Regular testing will continue at a number of sites in Epiphany Term. Testing is available for all students of the University and all staff employed by the University. We recommend testing twice weekly in line with government guidance, although there are no restrictions on frequency of testing.

Participation is entirely voluntary, but the University encourages all its members to take advantage of this opportunity to test for their own benefit and for the benefit of those around them.

The test involves applying a swab to the throat and nose. Results are available in 30 minutes and participants will be notified of their result, normally within 2 hours of taking the test.

A selection of videos on how to take an LFT are available here.

LFTs can only be used by fully trained individuals. As such, all participants need to watch a short video demonstrating the process and then pass a short quiz.

Please click on the relevant link below for more information including links to the training site, booking system, and FAQs.