As lockdown in Scotland continues to ease with more restrictions being lifted, people across the country are being reminded of the role they play in helping to control the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19).

Using the NHS Scotland Test and Protect service is key to breaking the chains of transmission, protecting the progress that has been made and saving lives. The service is already part of daily life, with venues asking for contact details as people start to go out more, and a campaign is underway to highlight the three things people are being asked to do to help contain future outbreaks.

Those with symptoms, such as a new, persistent cough, high temperature or loss of, or change in, taste or smell, should self-isolate and book a test immediately. If the test result is positive, they will be asked by NHS Scotland to provide the names of those
they’ve been in close contact with, as they may be at risk.

Those who are then contacted will be asked to isolate for 14 days. Following this advice is crucial as it can take 14 days for symptoms to develop, and the virus can be passed on during this time.

Cabinet Secretary for Health and Sport Jeane Freeman said:
“ NHS Scotland’s Test and Protect plays a vital and central role in protecting all of us and will ensure we move through the phases of our exit strategy. It is a collective effort to help us protect others and save lives.”

“ We will continue to lift restrictions if we break the chain of transmission and suppress the spread of the virus. We need everyone who has symptoms of COVID-19 to isolate and book a test immediately and to work with NHS Scotland contact tracers to identify who they may have had close contact with.”

“ NHS Test and Protect is central to keeping this virus under control but so too is physical distancing, wearing a face covering, avoiding crowds and good hand and cough hygiene. Together all of this will help us stay safe, protect others and save lives.”

People can book a test at NHSinform.scot/test-and-protect or call 0800 028 2816 if they can’t get online. The website provides information on additional support available when isolating. Those who cannot leave their home or get the help they need from family, friends or online can call the National Assistance Helpline on 0800 111 4000.