Testing & Symptoms
Please see the following guidance below for help with symptoms of COVID and where to book testing if required:
Please note that home Lateral flow tests should not be used on children under the age of 11.
The following link provides information of where in Essex testing will be taking place. This is updated every Friday.
Current dates and locations for mobile testing units. Mobile testing units are at various locations across Essex, and they are run by the Ministry of Defence.
The fastest way to get a test result is to go to a testing site. Individuals will need a pre-booked appointment, or they will not be given a test. People can also order home test kits to be sent directly to them. To book an appointment or order a home kit, please visit:
These routes remain the primary channels for any individuals displaying coronavirus symptoms to get a test.
Updated 26 April 2021
Self-Testing for Families
Everyone in Essex is now able to collect self-test kits from participating libraries and pharmacies. Regular self-testing among school communities will help keep all children and their families safe as we move along the roadmap out of lock down.
We encourage parents and guardians to collect free packs of self-test kits for their families. Alternatively, they can order them online.
If you test positive from a self-test kit or develop symptoms, you should book a follow-up test on GOV.UK or call 119.
We would also like to remind families that there is financial support available if they need to self-isolate. The criteria have recently been extended so that parents and guardians are eligible if they need to take time off work to look after a child or young person who is self-isolating. You must also meet the other criteria.
Updated 26 March 2021
Primary school pupils and rapid asymptomatic testing
On advice from Public Health England (PHE), pupils in primary schools and children in nursery settings are not included in the rapid asymptomatic testing programme.
PHE has advised that there are currently limited public health benefits to testing primary-aged pupils with lateral flow devices (LFD). In addition, primary-aged pupils, particularly younger children, may find the LFD testing process unpleasant and are unable to self-swab.
We are advising that primary-aged pupils should only be tested if they are symptomatic, in which case their families should follow the guidance for households with possible or confirmed coronavirus (COVID-19) infection and book a PCR test for the child.
Updated 5 October 2020
Please click here for the Covid-19 symptom parental support tool
Updated 24 September 2020
Updated 18 September 2020
Click here for a flow chart to help with child's illness symptoms and attending school.
Updated 17 September 2020
Who to contact in an emergency
If at any stage someone at your setting cannot cope with the symptoms or their condition significantly worsens, use the https://111.nhs.uk/COVID-19 service. If you do not have internet access, dial NHS 111. In a medical emergency, dial 999.
Updated 14 September 2020
Please click on the link below for some helpful advice regarding COVID-related pupil absence and some FAQs regarding Track and Trace: