Staff testing & contact tracing
The information on this page is now located on the new LTHT staff intranet which can be accessed by logging in with your NHS Mail email address.
View Guidelines Archive
Do I need to isolate?
Please see the Guidance for Managers page for the latest guidance on the isolation process.
Contact Tracing SOP
Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) information for CSUs to provide those staff members testing positive for COVID-19
Lateral Flow self-testing
Members of LTHT staff are being asked to take part in self-testing at home using lateral flow tests twice weekly. The process is quite simple and involves taking a swab from the nostril and then placing the swab into a small amount of solution which is then dropped using a pipette into a small test similar to a pregnancy test.
The tests are a good indicator if a member of staff could be asymptomatic with Covid-19. If the result is positive then the member of staff will be referred for a PCR test and would need to begin isolating until these results are confirmed. If the PCR test is positive then the member of staff should continue to isolate and begin Test and Trace. If the test is negative then the member of staff should return to work as normal. Staff should take their sample as carefully as possible, in line with the guidance, as good sample-taking enhances the sensitivity of the test.
- Lateral Flow testing - guidance for staff [16/11/20 - NHS England]
- Lateral Flow testing - FAQs [16/11/20 - NHS England]
- Lateral Flow testing - SOP [16/11/20 - NHS England]
- There is also a video available from NHS England here.
Staff COVID-19 testing
Access the guidance for managers. (21/08/2020)
Staff testing - results advice (06/07/21)
Last updated: 24/09/2020
- Anti-body test letter including online booking link [24.09.2020]
- Anti-body FAQs [24.09.2020]
I have heard that we can now get an Antibody test. How do I get one?
We are continuing to extend COVID-19 antibody testing across the Trust.
It is also important that staff do not just turn up for testing and only attend booked appointments. This helps us to ensure appropriate social distancing and avoid queuing.
Please contact your CSU teams in the first instance to book an appointment.
The test is an indicator that you may have had COVID-19 infection and developed antibodies. A positive result does not mean you are immune to future infections and a negative result does not mean you have not been infected and so regardless of result all current social distancing and PPE requirements need to be continued.
If the Antibody test confirms that I have had the virus, does that mean I will never get the virus again?
No. At the present time, there is insufficient evidence to suggest that an individual cannot get the virus again.
If the Antibody test confirms that I have had the virus, am I immune?
No. If you receive a positive antibody test it does not mean that you’re immune, or that you cannot pass the virus on to someone else. It also does not mean that you can ignore social distancing guidance. Please continue to follow government guidance regarding this including social distancing guidance.
If I have had the virus can I stop using PPE when caring for patients?
No. Our understanding of the virus will grow as new scientific evidence and studies emerge. COVID-19 is a new disease, and our understanding of the body’s immune response to it is limited. We do not know, for example, how long an antibody response lasts, whether the antibodies produced are effective in neutralising the virus, or whether having antibodies means a person cannot transmit the virus to others. Therefore, you should follow the same guidance in relation to PPE as you may still be able to pass on the virus to patients.
If the Antibody tests confirms that I have had the virus, and I am contacted by the Test and Trace team to say that I have been in contact with someone who has tested positive for COVID19, do I still have to isolate?
Yes. As there is insufficient evidence you cannot get the virus more than once, you should still isolate
What does the antibody test consist of? Is it a nose and throat swab like the Coronavirus test?
The Antibody test requires you to have a blood sample. Therefore you will be expected to attend an appointment with a healthcare worker who will take your blood sample and send it for testing.
Am I required to have an Antibody test?
No. Antibody tests are voluntary.
Will my manager be informed of the results of my Antibody test?
No. This information is confidential and will not be disclosed without consent
Am I required to inform my manager of the results of my Antibody test?
No. This is confidential to you and there is no requirement to inform your manager of your results.
If I am found to have previously had COVID19, will I be moved to hot areas in the Trust?
No. Even if you inform your manager that you have had an Antibody test and tested positive for having had the virus, this will no impact on where you are deployed within the Trust