Covid-19 testing now to include under fives

Children under the age of five will be eligible for coronavirus testing as of tomorrow (Wednesday, July 22).

By Neil McGrory, Local Democracy Reporter
Tuesday, 21st July 2020, 1:30 pm
It is recommended that testing of all children under 11 should be completed by their parent or carer. Photo by Andrew Mulligan/POOL/AFP via Getty Images.

So far, children who display potential symptoms of the virus are not routinely tested and this is only done if there is a pressing clinical need.

However, with childcare settings now back in operation, young children can be tested at drive-in facilities, mobile testing units or by using a home test kit. It is recommended that testing of all children under 11 should be completed by their parent or carer.

Scotland’s interim Chief Medical Officer, Gregor Smith, said: “In light of the continued change in lockdown restrictions and the resumption of early learning and childcare, we have reviewed our testing policy for children under five.

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“We want to avoid households having to isolate unnecessarily if young children in their family are displaying coronavirus-like symptoms which can be common in this age group.

“I would encourage anyone who has symptoms of Covid-19 or whose child has symptoms, to get a test immediately to help us suppress the spread of the virus.”