A new walk-through coronavirus testing centre has opened in North Lanarkshire.
The facility, at Fleming House car park in Cumbernauld, is being provided by the UK Government as part of efforts to improve access to testing for local communities.
The network of UK Government diagnostic testing facilities in Scotland now comprises six drive-through sites, 16 walk-through facilities, 21 mobile units, and the Glasgow Lighthouse Lab operated by the University of Glasgow which is working round-the-clock to process tests.
Baroness Dido Harding, interim executive chairwoman of the National Institute for Health Protection, said: “Walk-through sites offer communities better access to coronavirus testing, so everyone with symptoms can get a test.
“This new site is part of our ongoing work to expand our testing network across the UK, which now has the capacity to process more than 500,000 tests a day.
“We will continue to expand capacity to improve test turnaround times and push forward testing innovations to make sure anyone who needs a test can get one.
“Please book a test if you have coronavirus symptoms – a new continuous cough, a high temperature and a loss or change in sense of smell or taste – and follow the advice of NHS Test and Protect if you are contacted.”
North Lanarkshire is one of 11 local authorities in Scotland currently under Level 4 coronavirus restrictions, the tightest level of rules.
Gabe Docherty, director of public health at NHS Lanarkshire, said: “The public health department continues to contact-trace positive cases and clusters in our community and this addition to the UK testing provision is welcome.
“I want to thank the public for their co-operation in reducing spread of the virus and ask that they please remain vigilant.
“The general measures to minimise the risk of Covid-19 remain the same – face coverings, avoid crowded places, clean your hands, two-metre distance, self-isolate and go for a test if you have symptoms.
“Please do not hesitate if you have symptoms. It’s critical that you go for a test and this walk-in centre is a very welcome addition to our testing capacity.”
Tests must be booked in advance at www.nhsinform.scot/test-and-protect, or by calling 0800 028 2816.
Scotland Office minister Iain Stewart said: “The UK Government is helping all parts of the UK fight the coronavirus pandemic.
“Testing is vital, helping to manage local outbreaks and protecting people’s livelihoods.
“The UK Government is providing the bulk of Covid testing in Scotland, and this new walk-through centre is just the latest in our extensive testing network.”