3 May 2022

New drive-through PCR COVID-19 testing service

In order to help manage COVID-19 testing over the coming months the KEMH is launching a new drive-through PCR testing service. This forms part of the changes to how we will be managing the testing service now that Lateral Flow Devices (LFDs) are being made widely available.

If you are symptomatic with COVID-19 we would request that you first self-test with an LFD if one is available to you. These can be collected from the KEMH Pharmacy or are being distributed to staff by most employers. If you are symptomatic and do not have access to an LFD, do not come to the hospital to collect one. Instead please call 28000 and you may be advised to attend the drive-through centre directly at a specified appointment time.

If your LFD self-test returns a positive result, please call 28000, your details will be taken and a member of the swabbing team will get back to you with instructions to attend for a confirmatory PCR test at the drive-through centre. At this stage we will aim to confirm all self-tested LFDs by PCR (the gold standard test) where possible.

If you are identified as a direct contact of a confirmed positive case, please contact Pandemic Surveillance on 28008, or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. to arrange for swabs to be collected. If you require swabs for self-testing/surveillance testing, please collect these via Pharmacy.

Anyone who experiences the symptoms of COVID-19 should contact KEMH first and request an appointment for a test. Appointments will not be available on a ‘walk-in’ basis.

The drive-through testing centre will be situated at 9 Thatcher Drive, which is at the bottom end of the terrace. This is a one-way street and must be accessed from the Secretariat with the exit out onto Reservoir Road.

Any students sitting examinations requiring a certified positive result will be asked to visit 9 Thatcher Drive, appointments can be booked by calling 28000.

The service:

  • Clinic opening hours are: Monday to Friday 7am – 3pm and Saturday 9am – 12pm (lunchtime) the clinic will be closed from 12pm - 1pm each day
  • You will be provided with an allotted appointment time, you are not allowed to attend the drive-through without an appointment
  • This will be a drive by service. The swab will be a PCR test (subject to change as the pandemic progresses)
  • Children aged 6 and over can be swabbed
  • The results will be issued by the Laboratory with an initial aim of 24 hours for symptomatic testing
  • The COVID team will contact you with your result

The drive-through testing service is not an on-call service. If you feel unwell or need advice when the service is closed then please call the KEMH on 28000.

What will happen on arrival to the drive-through:

  • You will be asked before arrival to please wear a mask while in your vehicle
  • Do not leave your vehicle, you will need to park outside of 9 Thatcher Drive at your allotted appointment time
  • A clinician in appropriate PPE will approach your vehicle, please ensure you have your window open
  • You will be asked to confirm your details, including your name and contact number
  • The swab will be taken from you and then sent to the lab for your results

If you cannot attend your drive-through appointment then please let the KEMH know and an alternative appointment will be provided.