As you are a Student at NCL, or the Parent / Guardian of an NCL Student who is under 18 years, we wanted to let you know about the new College/HEIs Asymptomatic Testing Programme, which is being put in place as part of the package of COVID-19 risk reduction mitigations in college/HEIs across Scotland, and to give you more information about how the programme will operate in NCL.
For Parents/Guardians of an NCL Student under 18 years of age, who is eligible for testing, we ask that you discuss the contents of this page and the privacy notice for the programme with them. If you and they are content, please ensure that the consent form is completed. This will ensure that your child can participate in testing if he/she wishes to do so.
Along with the other protective measures we are implementing to keep our college community safe, regular testing of staff and students will help to further reduce risks for staff and children and young people in our college.
It will do so by helping to identify asymptomatic individuals in college/HEI environments at the earliest possible opportunity, and asking them and their close contacts to self-isolate, thus minimising the likelihood of them passing on the virus.
The regular testing is open to all NCL staff and students who are regularly attending the NCL premises. The testing programme will also be open to NCL students who are on placement in childcare, or other care settings.
Testing is voluntary. No-one who is otherwise permitted to come to NCL campuses will be prevented from doing so just because they do not wish to participate. However, we are strongly encouraging all NCL staff and students who are attending our campuses to participate wherever possible, in order to contribute to the wellbeing of our NCL community.
However, if staff or students are working or learning from home, they should not participate. This is because the programme is intended specifically to reduce risks in the college/HEI environment.
Everybody who is participating must consent in advance to do so. The consent process is being managed digitally and you can access the consent form below:
As part of the consent process, all participants must ensure that they read the NCL Privacy Notice, which can be accessed below
NCL is being provided with a supply of Lateral Flow Device (LFD) test kits by the Scottish Government and the UK Department of Health and Social Care for use at home. We will give each participating staff member and student a supply of these test kits to take home, together with the ‘Instructions for Use’. Each staff member and student will be asked to sign for these in a log at the point of handover. Completion of this test kit log is a regulatory requirement.
We will then ask individuals to test regularly at home, twice a week on Monday and Thursdays – ideally in the morning before attending college.
The tests supplied do not require laboratory processing and can provide a quick result in around 30 minutes. Comprehensive guidance on conducting self-testing is contained in the ‘Instructions for Use’ leaflet which will be provided with the test kit. There is a useful video showing participants how to administer the test below:
Once the test has been conducted individuals must log the test result – whether positive, negative or void – online at www.gov.uk/report-covid19-result. Tests are free of charge and will be provided by NCL.
We intend to start distributing test kits to staff and students from 10 May 2021, once those who wish to participate have provided consent. We will confirm arrangements for each campus very soon.
We will continue to support and communicate with our staff, students and NCL communities as we implement this programme. Please let us know if you have any questions by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or giving us a call on 0300 555 8080.
In the meantime, some Frequently Asked Questions can be found below.
NCL will provide those participating with the most up to date Instructions for Use along with their test kits. Participants will be asked to ensure they use these, and not the ones that are pre-packaged in the test kits.
The Instructions for Use set out clearly how to use the test kits, or how to support someone to do so. They also provide a number to call if there are any problems with the test kits.
LFD tests have been widely and successfully used to detect COVID-19 in asymptomatic individuals. No test is perfect, but the speed and convenience of LFD tests supports detection of the virus in asymptomatic individuals who would not otherwise be tested. They are clinically approved and are crucial in the fight against the virus. The Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) has approved the use of these at-home tests for these purposes.
LFD tests are very accurate, which means that only a very small proportion of people who do not have coronavirus will receive a positive result (false positive). The tests are better at picking up true positive cases when a person has a higher viral load and is more contagious. There is a risk of returning a false negative result when viral loads are low (e.g. in the early stages of infection). This is why Public Health Scotland recommend two LFD tests 3 to 4 days apart, or regular testing, to enhance detection by picking up any cases which were not detected during the first test and to catch any new infections.
If someone tests positive using an LFD, it is likely that they are infectious at that moment, whereas people testing positive on a ‘Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR)’ test could be in the less infectious early or late stages of disease. This means that by using the LFD, we can identify people with a high viral load who are the most likely to spread the virus further.
Any incidents that could potentially impact the quality or safety of testing should be reported to the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA).
For incidents occurring in a home setting, please report any issues (for example: something damaged, or missing or difficult to use in the kit, you are unable to log a result) to 0300 303 2713.
If there is a clinical incident which led to, or has the potential for, harm (e.g. swab breaks in the mouth, bleeding, allergic reaction on using the kit etc.) please report it on https://coronavirusyellowcard.mhra.gov.uk.
This is not for seeking immediate medical care. Medical care should be sought through the usual route of contacting 111 or 999.
Any student who receives a positive result on a Lateral Flow Device at home must report the result online at www.gov.uk/report-covid19-result, self-isolate and book a confirmatory PCR test. This can be done via https://www.gov.uk/get-coronavirus-test. We advise visiting a community or drive-through test site as this is the quickest way to get tested, or you can order a home test kit.
It is important that the student begins self-isolation immediately after they receive the positive result from the LFD test, and does not wait until the result of their PCR test.
They must report the result online at www.gov.uk/report-covid19-result. Individuals who test negative will be able to stay in NCL and resume their activities as normal.
This means the test has not run correctly. The student must report the result online at www.gov.uk/report-covid19-result. They will need to take another test. Use a new test kit, and do not reuse anything from the first kit.
If a student or member of staff has tested positive, they will have to self-isolate as per government guidelines. The student or member of staff should also inform NCL of their absence, and are strongly encouraged to report a positive case to us to support contact tracing activities.
Both Test and Protect and, once informed, NCL will get in contact with staff members and students who were in close contact with a positive case to inform them that they need to self-isolate.
This testing programme at NCL is for people with no symptoms. If a student develops symptoms at any time (such as a high temperature; a new, continuous cough; or a loss or change to their sense of smell or taste) they must immediately self-isolate, and book a test by calling 0800 028 2816 or visiting https://www.nhsinform.scot/. People with symptoms must not rely on a negative LFD result to continue to attend at NCL.
No, this asymptomatic LFD testing is aimed at staff and students only. The tests will be handed to staff and students for personal use and should not be used for anyone else. Family members of staff or students taking part are not eligible for this programme. If required, family members can access lateral flow testing from public programmes.