HM Government of Gibraltar is pleased to announce that as from Thursday 31st March 2022, and in line with the COVID-19 Exit Strategy Plan, COVID-19 Lateral Flow Tests will be made more widely available in Gibraltar and will provide people with greater options for self-testing.
COVID-19 Lateral Flow Tests approved by the Director of Public Health will be able to be imported into Gibraltar and sold in pharmacies and other retail shops. It is, however, important to note that only tests that appear on the Director of Public Health’s list of approved lateral flow tests and which can be found on the Public Health Website, will be allowed to be imported: https://ec.europa.eu/health/system/files/2022-03/covid-19_rat_common-list_en_1.pdf
Members of the public are urged to share details of their lateral flow test result, whether negative or positive, using the online form setup by Public Health. It will enable the Health Protection team to continue to identify outbreaks in vulnerable settings and implement control measures to prevent further spread.
The online form can be accessed using the QR code provided below or the following link: https://forms.gle/AthotBMWwMuMgawu5
Those who are unable to use the online QR code should contact the Health Protection Team on 22258707 between 9am & 5pm Monday – Friday to report their result.
In the event of a positive test result, individuals should also contact 111 without delay and 111 will then arrange for a confirmatory test to be conducted at the earliest opportunity. 111 advice is to be followed at all times.
The Director Public Health, Dr Helen Carter, said: ‘we have previously had a model of tightly controlled testing for three main reasons. Firstly, to enable us to ensure the quality of the tests being used, secondly ensuring correct technique and thirdly so that we could link the results from the laboratory into the Contact Tracing Bureau. We are now moving through the next phase of the pandemic and able to ease our restrictions because we are in a good position in terms of being a highly vaccinated population and having access to antiviral therapy to help to protect those who are still at risk of the most serious consequences of infection. We have eased face mask wearing and now it is time for us to ease back testing. We are ensuring that the quality of tests being used are of a high quality. I would encourage people to read information leaflets or watch online tutorials on how to perform the test. We still require people to notify us if they test positive. The Contact Tracing Bureau is ceasing on 31st March but the public health function will continue. If you cannot access the QR code or link provided you can still contact the Health Protection team to share your details. We are not contact tracing as we were: rather we are reviewing positive cases so that we can identify individuals in whom antiviral therapy will help prevent the serious consequences of the disease and to enable us to identify outbreaks in vulnerable settings to implement control measures to prevent further spread. We have changed our approach from a blanket approach for all of the population and are now focusing our resources and efforts on continuing to protect those who are still at risk of the severe consequences of infection. Please remember COVID has not gone away: we are learning to live and adapt to this ever changing virus’