The areas in Essex which will be offering testing for people without symptoms of coronavirus have been updated.

Parts of the county were already offering rapid test for those without symptoms.

The Government has said testing will be made available across the country from this week.

Local authorities will be encouraged to target testing at people who are unable to work from home during the national lockdown.

The Government says expansion of asymptomatic testing will identify more positive cases of Covid-19.

It says the programme is crucial given around 1 in 3 people have coronavirus without displaying any symptoms.

So far, 131 local authorities have signed up to community testing, with 107 already having started testing in their communities including in Essex.

It is being rolled out across Tendring and Colchester is also due to offer the tests, but no location has been confirmed.

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Health Secretary Matt Hancock said: "With roughly a third of people who have coronavirus not showing symptoms, targeted asymptomatic testing and subsequent isolation is highly effective in breaking chains of transmission.

"Rapid, regular testing is led by local authorities who design programmes based on their in-depth knowledge of the local populations, so testing can have the greatest impact.

Gazette: Matt Hancock. Picture: PAMatt Hancock. Picture: PA

"We are now expanding this offer to every local authority across the country, and asking testing to be targeted on workers who cannot work from home during this national lockdown, while asking employers to work with us to scale up workforce testing.

"Lateral flow tests have already been hugely successful in finding positive cases quickly – and every positive case found is helping to stop the spread - so I encourage employers and workers to take this offer up. We must all do all we can to stop the spread of COVID, right now."

Gazette: A testing centre. Picture: PAA testing centre. Picture: PA

These are the areas in Essex where tests will be available:

  • Basildon
  • Braintree
  • Brentwood
  • Castle Point
  • Chelmsford
  • Colchester
  • Epping Forest
  • Harlow
  • Maldon
  • Rochford
  • Tendring
  • Uttlesford