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COVID-19: Expansion to workplace testing programme

Employment / 30 March 2021

The Government has announced that employers can offer employees free lateral flow tests to be taken at home as part of its workplace testing programme.

In an extension to the original workplace testing programme (which we reported on here), from 6 April 2021, all businesses with more than 10 employees and who cannot offer on-site testing (for example, due to a lack of space or because the business operates across multiple sites) will be eligible.

Employers will be able to order the home test kits online for distribution amongst staff.  Employees will need to collect them from the workplace, take the test at home and report the results to the NHS online.

Businesses are asked to register their interest in receiving the free tests by 12 April 2021 (even if they are not yet open or are unable to start using the tests straight away), and the tests will be free until 30 June 2021.

Employers with fewer than 10 employees can access testing through the community testing programme.  However, we understand that work is underway to allow staff of small businesses to order tests online to be sent to their home.


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This update is for general purposes and guidance only and does not constitute legal or professional advice. You should seek legal advice before relying on its content. This update relates to the prevailing circumstances at the date of its original publication and may not have been updated to reflect subsequent developments. If you have general queries about our updates, please email:

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