Children under the age of five who are displaying potential coronavirus (COVID-19) symptoms are now eligible for testing.
Until earlier this week, children under five with potential COVID-19 symptoms were not being routinely tested and a test was only carried out if there was a pressing clinical need to do so.
Now, with childcare settings reopening from 15 July, children aged under five who have COVID-19 symptoms are eligible for routine testing through all routes including drive-in Regional Testing Centres, Mobile Testing Units and by ordering a home test kit.
COVID-19 Testing for all children under 11 years old should be completed by their parent or carer.
Interim Chief Medical Officer Gregor Smith said:
“In light of the continued change in lockdown restrictions and the resumption of early learning and childcare, we have reviewed our testing policy for children under five.
“We want to avoid households having to isolate unnecessarily if young children in their family are displaying coronavirus-like symptoms which can be common in this age group.
“I would encourage anyone who has symptoms of COVID-19 or whose child has symptoms, to get a test immediately to help us supress the spread of the virus.”
Kenneth Gibson MSP added:
“While it is well-known that older people are much more susceptible to the coronavirus than young children, we know that they can contract it.
“Whereas they were in full lockdown at home before, their ability to go out, and play with people, hug their grannies and so on, means it makes sense to now include them for testing.”
Test and Protect was rolled out across Scotland on 28 May 2020.
People with any of the following symptoms should self isolate and book a test at nhsinform.scot/test-and-protect or call 0800 028 2816 if they are unable to access the online service:
• a high temperature or fever
• a new continuous cough
• a loss of, or change in sense of smell or taste