Full list of new areas to get door-to-door surge Covid testing as South African strain is detected
17 February 2021, 07:09 | Updated: 17 February 2021, 08:11
New postcodes will get door-to-door surge testing including Greater Manchester, Norfolk, Southampton and Surrey.
Additional surge testing will be carried out in more places across England in a bid to find cases of the South African variant of Covid-19.
These include areas of Norfolk, Southampton and Surrey, as well as an expanded area of Manchester.
The door-to-door tests and genomic sequencing will carry across to the IP22 postcode of Norfolk, SO15 in Southampton and GU22 areas of Woking.
Testing will also be expanded to cover Manchester’s M40 and M9 postcodes.
People living within these targeted areas are ‘strongly encouraged’ to take a COVID-19 test this week regardless of whether they are showing symptoms or not.
Those with coronavirus symptoms should book a test in the usual way on the government website, while everyone else can find out more information on their local council website.
According to experts, the South African variant of Covid-19 is more infectious than the normal strain.
In a bid to stop it spreading, the Government has recently launched a crackdown on border controls.
From Monday, all travellers entering the UK from countries on the Government’s ‘red list’ will be forced to quarantine in a hotel for 10 days or risk up to 10 years in prison.
Boris Johnson told the Commons that passengers will be ‘met at the airport and transported directly into quarantine’.
They will then have to stay there for at least 10 days, with mandatory testing on day two and day eight. If either of these tests come back positive, travellers will have to quarantine for a further 10 days.
The cost for each person will be £1,750 for the hotel, transport and testing.
As well as South Africa, other countries on the banned list include Portugal, Peru, United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Rwanda.
Health Secretary Matt Hancock said: “The rules coming into force today will bolster the quarantine system and provide another layer of security against new variants at the border. These new measures are important to protect our vaccination programme.”