From today (April 9), everyone in England will be able to access free lateral flow tests.

So far only certain categories of people have been eligible for asymptomatic testing.

These included older students, households with school-age children, early years staff and childminders, health and social care workers and people in small businesses who can't work from home.

However, as announced by the Prime Minister on Easter Monday, regular testing is part of the Government's plan to reopen society and the economy, which is why everyone in England is now being encouraged to take a test twice a week.

But how can we get hold of lateral flow tests in Wiltshire? And what should we do if they come back positive?

Collection sites

When rapid tests were first rolled out, four sites opened for in-person testing in Wiltshire, including Five Rivers Health and Wellbeing Centre in Salisbury.

Devizes Leisure Centre is the only site which has remained open as the others, including Five Rivers, all closed at the end of March.

This is because Wiltshire Council has adopted a new collection model, which it says will enable more people to access rapid tests. 

Five collection sites are currently open across the Wiltshire Council area. 

A further five are expected to open in the coming weeks.

The collection sites up and running so far are Devizes Leisure Centre (also doing in-person testing); the reception at Monkton park in Chippenham; the reception at Bourne Hill in Salisbury; Salisbury Beehive Park and Ride and Trowbridge Greyhound Pub Car Park.

To look for other sites, you can use this map.

Anyone wanting to collect testing kits can simply turn up without booking.

For in-person testing in Devizes, booking is still required.

Lateral flow tests can also be ordered online through the Government's website.

What to do if you test positive

If your lateral flow test comes back positive, you should self-isolate and request a confirmatory PCR.

You can do so by clicking HERE.

The result of your lateral flow test, regardless of whether it's positive, negative or void, should be registered online or by calling 119 to help with track and trace.

Symptomatic people

Anyone displaying coronavirus symptoms should go for a PCR test instead.

Read more: Why lateral flow tests should not be used if you have symptoms

These can be booked over the phone by calling 119 or online at NHS Coronavirus.

Guidance on how to use the tests

Wendy Lee, Professional Standards and Services Business Partner at Well Pharmacy, has shared her tips and step-by-step guide on how to take lateral flow tests.

This includes making sure you have enough tests for everyone in your household, keeping in mind basic hygiene and how to take the test in the correct way.

You can read her full guidance HERE.

More details next week

Hayley Mortimer, Public Health Consultant at Wiltshire Council, said: “Information about community testing and rapid test collection sites in the county can be found on our website:

“We will be revealing more sites next week in line with the reopening of some public buildings, and more towards the end of month. This is also a rapidly evolving picture with more collect sites being identified through a pharmacy collect option, and once we have more details we will also share these.”