Work is underway on a new coronavirus testing centre at the University of Lincoln, on the Joseph Banks Laboratory car park off Beevor Street.
It’s being set up ahead of an influx of students to the city next week, but it will also be open to the general public.
The Department for Health and Social Care and Deloitte hope to have the build finished on Tuesday ready for opening next Wednesday.
In a change to previous statements however, health chiefs are telling people they must book ahead, not just turn up — in line with national testing centre guidance.
“The problem with just turning up is it’s bad enough at the Lincolnshire Showground, but at least you’re going to be in a car, so you’re going to be distanced there automatically because of the vehicle,” said Lincolnshire County Council’s director of public health Professor Derek Ward.
“With the local testing site, we’ve got to manage the flow of people in and out of the centre for obvious reasons, we’ve got keep their distance, we’ve got to protect the staff that are doing the swabs.
“If people just turn up, it makes it really difficult to do that. So, my view and we’ve agreed, is that we are going to tell everybody they need to book.”
The centre is understood to have a tapered opening for the first few days, but will run from 8am-8pm from the following week.
There have been around 12,000 tests carried out over the past seven days in Lincolnshire with around 50-65 positive cases – around a 1.5% positivity rate.
Cases are expected to rise slightly as further and higher educations students begin their new term, but Professor Ward was confident processes were in place and students would understand their responsibilities.