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Tuesday, 24th March 2020

Sampling for Covid-19 begins in Louth and Meath

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Sampling for Covid-19 is under way at several designated community testing centres in Louth and Meath, specifically in Navan, Oldcastle and Dundalk with capacity to increase.

The sampling service is being provided on an appointment-only basis and only those who are displaying symptoms and have been referred (to the drive through) by their GP will be seen.

Pat Bennett, Chief Officer, HSE Midlands, Louth and Meath said, “We would like to acknowledge the tremendous support that we have got from our local communities as we implement the government action plan in response to Covid19. 

"We can’t stop the virus, but together, we can reduce the impact it has on ourselves, our families, communities, our health service and our day-to-day lives.

"Our goal is to slow the spread of coronavirus. If we can slow it down, we give ourselves, and our most vulnerable people, more options and more time for care and recovery. Our collective efforts are critical, we need to do this together, as one community. We will be asking everyone to play their part, to help each other.”

At no stage will visitors to the centres leave their car. Once checked in at the entrance, visitors will be provided with a face mask, tissues and disposable bag and directed to a test bay attended by healthcare workers wearing Personal Protection Equipment (PPE).

At this point, visitors will be asked to blow their nose and dispose of the tissue in the bag provided. A throat and nose swab will then be taken and the visitor will leave the facility and return to self-isolation. The results will be available from their GP.

 The HSE has appealed for the privacy of those staffing and visiting the centres to be respected.

 Further information on Testing for Covid-19 is at

https://www2.hse.ie/conditions/coronavirus/testing.html#home 

REMEMBER to wash your hands for at least 20 seconds, and do it often. Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or sleeve when coughing or sneezing, then bin the used tissue. Avoid touching your face with unwashed hands.  Stop hugging and shaking hands, and as we all know now, the big nights out and the big nights in are cancelled for now – work at home if you can.

 Stay at home if you have symptoms and get the advice you need on HSE.ie.

More information and advice on COVID-19 is available at www.hse.ie/coronavirus

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