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Swansea communities praised for playing key role in Covid fight

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Swansea

Three Swansea communities have been praised for helping the city fight the pandemic in a new way.

Penclawdd, Townhill and Penyrheol all have mobile testing units (MTUs) that are giving coronavirus tests to hundreds of Swansea people.

They’re being operated to robust controls by experienced contactor Mitie on behalf of the Swansea Bay University Health Board and the Welsh Government. Their staff are trained for this role and wear full protective equipment.

A test is taken safely and securely as the member of the public approaches.

The venues operate with doors opened so there’s be no surface contact. Everything is cleaned at the end of each session – so there is no risk to the community or those using the centre afterwards.

Mark Thomas, the council’s cabinet member for environment enhancement and infrastructure management, said: “I thank the communities that are home to the MTUs. They take up some space but they’re there for the good of us all.

“These units are for the community – for local people, their friends and neighbours. They help keep infection contained and mean that those feeling unwell do not have to drive some distance to a more established testing centre.

“The MTUs are safe for the local communities, those who book appointments there and the staff who work there.

“The controls are strong and they work. To put things into perspective, there have been more than 30,000 tests at the Liberty Stadium testing centre – but there’s been no infection in the workforce or stadium staff who are still in the building.”

MTUs have been set up across Swansea and Neath Port Talbot by Swansea Bay University Health Board. They include units at Penclawdd Community Centre, Townhill Community Centre and Penyrheol Leisure Centre.

Townhill and Penclawdd are walk-in only; Penyrheol has a walk-in facility and a drive-through. There are marshals at the units to show people which entrance to use.

The MTUs are in addition to the facility at the Liberty Stadium.

Only those with an appointment will be seen at the MTUs.  You should only book a test if you have symptoms. They began operating on Wednesday (note: Sept 30) and, in the first two days, undertook more than 320 tests across Swansea and Neath Port Talbot.

The process is safe with no contact between the MTU staff and the individual being tested. A full risk assessment was completed for each site, with measures put in place to ensure that each site will be a clean and safe environment, both for those attending and those living in the vicinity.

Each MTU is set up and managed by a team of 10.

To book a test: Go to https://gov.wales/apply-coronavirus-covid-19-test. You will need a mobile phone number or email address.

Rhys Gregory
Editor of Wales247.co.uk

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