1,400 people attend new ‘walk-in, no appointment needed’ Covid-19 test centres today

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The temporary testing centres will allow people who don’t have symptoms of Covid-19 to get a free test.

Updated 20 hours ago

1,400 PEOPLE HAVE accessed the five new “walk-in, no appointment necessary” Covid-19 test centres so far today.

The temporary testing centres will allow people who don’t have symptoms of Covid-19 to get a free test without having to contact their GP first. 

The HSE is opening the walk-in centres in areas where the number of positive cases are particularly high. 

The initial five test centres will open at the following locations: 

  • National Aquatic Centre – Blanchardstown, Dublin 15 – D15HT9N
  • Tallaght Stadium – Tallaght, Dublin 24 – D24FNK6
  • Irish Town Stadium – Irishtown, Dublin 4 – D04KN77
  • Tullamore Leisure Centre – Tullamore – R35A594
  • Grangegorman Primary Care Centre car park, (Entrance off NCR)-beside TUD campus – D07VPT0

The test centres are open from today until Wednesday, 31 March between 11am and 7pm. 

The HSE aims to carry out 300 to 500 Covid-19 tests per day at each centre.

HSE national lead for test and trace Niamh O’Beirne said that over 250 people attended the testing site in Grangegorman today, with a wait time of around 20 minutes per person.

Health Minister Stephen Donnelly welcomed the establishment of the testing sites this afternoon.

People over the age of 16 can avail of the walk-in test centres if they don’t have symptoms but wish to get tested, live within 5km of the centre and have not tested positive for Covid-19 in the last six months. 

Those who attend the walk-in clinics must bring photo ID and provide a mobile phone number so the HSE can contact them with test results. 

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People who have common symptoms of Covid-19 are asked not to go to the walk-in test centres. These symptoms include a high temperature, a new cough, shortness of breath or a loss or change of your sense of smell or taste.

The HSE is asking people who have any of those symptoms to self-isolate (stay in your room) and phone a GP straight away. The GP will then advise whether a free Covid-19 test is needed. 

“Around one in five people have no symptoms of Covid-19 and can spread it without knowing,” said O’Beirne. 

“We would urge people living near a walk-in test centre and who are concerned about Covid-19 to get a free test today,” said O’Beirne. 

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

With reporting by Tadgh McNally

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