Staff at a care home which has been at the forefront of Shetland’s fight against Covid-19 are to be tested for the virus.
NHS Shetland said it would be testing staff at the Wastview Care Home in Walls over the next two days.
The testing is in line with Scottish government guidance that all residents and staff should be tested if a case of Covid-19 is recorded.
Although there have been no positive tests in Shetland since 20th April, Wastview has previously been hit hard by the virus.
The Care Inspectorate said in a statement last month that it was “aware of the tragic deaths of residents at this care home”.
The spokesperson said these deaths were as a result of “suspected cases of Covid-19”, but would not confirm how many residents had died.
NHS Shetland’s chief executive Michael Dickson said the announcement of testing was not in response to any new cases in the home or any concerns about the quality of care.
Most residents in the facility have been swabbed more than once already.
Susan Laidlaw, NHS Shetland Consultant in Public Health, said government policy was now to test all residents and staff at a home where there have been confirmed cases of Covid-19, whether or not they had symptoms.
She said this is with the aim of identifying any other people who are positive, even if asymptomatic, and isolating them.
The staff testing in Wastview will be over the next two days, with all results being available by the end of the week, she said.
“Previously, the guidance was to test residents and staff in care homes who were symptomatic,” Dr Laidlaw said,
“However, as the pandemic has moved on and much more is known about Covid-19 and the impact on care homes and the vulnerable people who live in them, the national advice is now to test everyone in an outbreak situation regardless of symptoms.
“If any of the care workers do have a positive test result, then they will self isolate and the Public Health team will identify if they have any contacts who may also need to self isolate, and may potentially need to be tested as well.”