Lateral flow testing (LFT) is one of the ways that we can help keep ourselves and others safe and to prevent the spread of Covid-19. 

We expect a rapid LFT to be taken twice a week (every three or four days) to help prevent spread, so that we can continue to provide you with the best possible student experience. 

Regular rapid lateral flow testing

Free home testing kits are available to staff and students regularly on our sites. They can be collected anytime from the following locations:

Cranfield campus

  • Mitchell Hall reception
  • Sports Centre
  • Main Reception, Building 26
  • Building 111 reception
  • Martell House reception
  • CMDC conference registration reception, building 240

Shrivenham site

  • Workshops

You do not need to make an appointment; you can just turn up to collect a test kit.

Thank you for your helping in keeping us all safe.

FAQs

Who is the testing for?
Can I order tests for my household/family?
Do I have to take a test?
Can I take more than one test?
What is a lateral flow test?
How do I take a test?
How safe is the test?
Receiving your results and what to do next
Can I leave quarantine to take an LFT test?
Can an LFT be used as the test that needs to be taken on day 2 and day 8 of quarantine?
Can an LFT be used to reduce quarantine under the UK Government's 'Test to Release' scheme?
Can free NHS lateral flow tests be used for travel purposes?
If I have quarantined, do I still need to take an LFT?
Testing if you are displaying Covid-19 symptoms
Further questions?

Who is the testing for?

The UK Government is encouraging everyone without Covid-19 symptoms, aged 11 or older, to take lateral flow tests twice a week and report the results online, regardless of the outcome.

Can I collect tests for my household/family from the University?

The home testing kits available from the locations above are for staff and students regularly on our sites. 

Do I have to take a test?

LFT testing significantly improves the detection of positive cases, so people can isolate themselves and, ultimately, help break the chain of transmission.

A rapid lateral flow test should be taken twice a week (every three or four days). These tests are strongly recommended to help keep yourself and others safe.

Can I take more than one test?

Yes. There are seven tests in each test kit – the UK Government is encouraging everyone without Covid-19 symptoms, aged 11 or older, to take LFTs twice a week (every three to four days).

What is a lateral flow test?

The LFT is for individuals without symptoms (asymptomatic), who may be infectious but are unaware of it. LFT testing significantly improves the detection of positive cases, so people can isolate themselves and, ultimately, help break the chain of transmission.

It is a quick, safe and simple test. It involves a swab from your nose and throat that you take yourself.

Full information about how to take the test will be provided in the test kit.

While the test might be a little uncomfortable, it is not painful and is very quick to do.

How do I take a test?

Full instructions are provided in the test kit.

How safe is the test?

Lateral flow tests are validated technology and are safe. These tests have undergone rigorous testing and evaluation, including at Public Health England’s research laboratories, to ensure they are verified for use.

Receiving your results and what to do next

The LFT delivers a result within 30 minutes on the reading window of the hand-held device. The different test outcomes are explained in the instructions within the test kit, as well as details of how to record your results via the Government website.

If you receive a positive test result:

  • You and anyone you live with must self-isolate immediately.
  • Report your lateral flow test result.
  • Book a PCR test to confirm your result as soon as possible.
  • You must also let the University know by emailing coronavirus-reporting@cranfield.ac.uk.

If you receive a negative test result:

  • You can continue as normal, unless you are notified as being a close contact of someone who has tested positive.

If you receive a void test result:

  • Please call NHS 119 from a UK phone number to discuss this.

If you are a close contact of someone who tests positive:

  • If you live in the same household as someone who tests positive, you must self-isolate.

What is the difference between an LFT and a PCR test?

  • A lateral flow test (LFT) can return a result faster than the PCR because it does not need to be sent to a laboratory. This type of test is being used to test people without symptoms of coronavirus (asymptomatic) who may be infectious but are unaware of it.
  • A polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test is typically used when people are displaying symptoms of coronavirus. The results take longer than a LFT to be returned. People entering some countries are required to show a negative PCR test result. If a PCR test is required for travel purposes, this needs to be arranged privately.

Can I leave quarantine to take an LFT test?

No, however, you are able to have LFTs sent to your address, free of charge.

The lateral flow test (LFT) cannot be used to reduce the amount of time you need to quarantine under the UK Government’s 'Test to Release' scheme. The test needed to reduce a quarantine period is a PCR test, which you would need to arrange through a private test provider. If you were to then receive a negative result, you would be able to reduce your time in quarantine. You would still need to quarantine for five days before you could take this test. Full information about the 'Test to Release' scheme is available on the Government website. We have published some information on our intranet about the clinics that we are aware of in the local Bedford/Milton Keynes area offering private PCR tests.

Can an LFT be used as the test that needs to be taken on day 2 and day 8 of quarantine?

No. Anyone travelling to England from overseas will need to take the Covid-19 tests sent in the Government travel test package. These need to be booked and paid for in advance of any travel. Further information has been published on the UK Government website.

Please note, a negative result does not enable you to leave quarantine early.

Can an LFT be used to reduce quarantine under the UK Government's 'Test to Release' scheme?

No, the LFT cannot be used to reduce the amount of time you need to quarantine when you return to or travel to the UK.

The test needed to reduce a quarantine period is a PCR test, which you would need to arrange through a private test provider. If you were to then receive a negative result, you would be able to reduce your time in quarantine. You would still need to quarantine for five days before you could take this test. Full information about the 'Test to Release' scheme is available on the Government website. We have published some information on our intranet about the clinics that we are aware of in the local Bedford/Milton Keynes area offering private PCR tests.

Can free NHS lateral flow tests be used for travel purposes?

No, the free NHS Test and Trace lateral flow tests (which are available on campus) cannot be used as your day 2 test for international travel. Instead, you will need to purchase a LFT from a private provider. There is a list of providers on the UK Government website.

If I have quarantined, do I still need to take an LFT?

Yes, these tests are strongly recommended to help keep yourself and others safe.

Testing if you are displaying Covid-19 symptoms

The LFT is for people without symptoms of coronavirus (asymptomatic). If you are displaying symptoms, however mild, please do not attend the LFT Centre. Instead, you should book a PCR (polymerase chain reaction) test either via the NHS Covid-19 app, the nhs.uk/coronavirus website or by telephoning 119. This test will, most likely, take place at the testing centre located in Medway Court, Building 3, on the edge of the Cranfield campus. If you receive a positive PCR test result, you must let us know by emailing coronavirus-reporting@cranfield.ac.uk.

Questions?

If you have any further questions, please email coronavirus-questions@cranfield.ac.uk.