Two mobile Covid-19 asymptomatic testing units are set to be deployed in East Lothian in a bid to help identify positive cases and break chains of transmission.

Members of the public who have no symptoms associated with Covid-19, but who may be infectious and spreading the disease without knowing it, can book a test online or telephone 0300 303 2713.

The units, which are being provided by the Scottish Government and staffed by the Scottish Ambulance Service, will initially be deployed in Prestonpans and Tranent from Monday, 8 March to Wednesday 10 March.

They will then move to Port Seton and Whitecraig for three days from Thursday, 11 March until Saturday, 13 March.

Thereafter they will switch between the four communities up until 28 March.

The locations have been identified on a targeted basis in co-operation with public health colleagues, using the most up-to-date data looking at virus prevalence.

Meanwhile, further arrangements for asymptomatic community testing are being developed for potential rollout in the weeks ahead.


What is asymptomatic COVID-19 testing?

This is testing for people who have no Covid-19 symptoms but who could still be infectious and spreading the virus without knowing it.

Why should you get tested?

Almost 1 in 3 people who have Covid-19 don’t have any of the usual symptoms but are potentially passing the virus on to loved ones, friends and others in the community.

By getting tested you can find out if you are positive, and take immediate action to stop the spread of the virus to others, by self-isolating.

Where can I get tested if I’ve no symptoms?

Bookings should be made in advance.

Bookings can be made from 6pm on the day before you are looking to take a test. This means that the first bookings can be made from 6pm on Sunday, 7 March for appointments in Prestonpans and Tranent on Monday, 8 March.

This can be done by completing the ‘get a free test online’ at the following link:

When asked why you are booking a test, select the option ‘my local council or health protection team has asked me to get a test, even though I do not have symptoms’.

You do need to live in the local area where the mobile testing unit is operating.

The mobile testing units will be available from 10am to 6pm at:

8-10 March

  • Prestonpans Community Centre, Preston Road, Prestonpans, EH32 9QS.
  • Loch Centre, Well Wynd, Tranent, EH33 2JX

11-13 March

  • Port Seton Centre, South Seton Park, Port Seton, EH32 0BQ
  • The Mercat Bar & Grill, 10 Whitecraig Road, Whitecraig, EH21 8PG

14-16 March

  • Prestonpans Community Centre
  • Loch Centre, Tranent

17-19 March

  • Port Seton Centre
  • The Mercat Bar & Grill, Whitecraig

20-22 March

  • Prestonpans Community Centre
  • Loch Centre, Tranent

23-25 March

  • Port Seton Centre
  • The Mercat Bar & Grill, Whitecraig

26-28 March

  • Prestonpans Community Centre
  • Loch Centre, Tranent

Should I attend one of these sites if I have symptoms of COVID-19?

No, the mobile/community testing sites are only for people without symptoms and a different type of test should be taken. Anyone with COVID-19 symptoms should book a test via or by calling 0300 303 2713.

What happens at the test?

The mobile units will be safe and secure and follow the strictest hygiene and cleaning guidelines. Staff will support and guide you throughout your visit.

When you attend a site please ensure that you are wearing a face covering and continue to follow physical distancing guidance.

Please also dress appropriately for the weather, during popular times you may have to wait to be tested.

What happens if I test positive and need to isolate?

The best way to stop Covid-19 is for those who are infected to stay away from everyone else, by self-isolating. We understand how difficult it can be to self-isolate and we want to help you, as much as we can, to do this as.

Practical, confidential support is available within the testing facility, to support you and your household, if you test positive and need to self-isolate. We can give you advice on different financial help which is available and help you to access it.

Don't let the worry of having to self-isolate stop you from getting tested. We're here to help where we can.

If you have symptoms of COVID make an appointment through the NHS Inform website:

Self-help guide: Access to testing for coronavirus | NHS inform

Or telephone: 0300 303 2713

The phone line is available between 7 am and 11 pm Mon - Sunday

If you have tested positive for COVID, you must self isolate.

If you need general advice (not Health advice), advice on self-isolation support grants, assistance with food or assistance with fuel poverty either:

Other helpful telephone numbers:

  • East Lothian Council               01620 827827
  • 24 hour emergency line          01875 612818
  • Emergency Social Work          0800 731 6969

What happens if I test negative?

You don’t have to take any action other than continuing to follow all national guidance including following current ‘stay at home’ restrictions and physical distancing. Although you may not have the virus at this time, it is still circulating and there is a risk of catching it.

Help curb the spread

Councillor Jim Goodfellow, Cabinet Spokesperson for Community Wellbeing, said:

“While it’s great to see progress with the vaccination programme which offers a way out of this awful situation, the reality is that COVID-19 continues to present a significant risk.

“Not everyone who has the virus will be showing symptoms, which means people could be spreading it without realising.

“That’s why, by visiting a local asymptomatic testing facility, you can help your community, families and friends stay safe and slow down the spread of this devastating virus.

“Support will be available for people who test positive and need to self-isolate and I would encourage as many people as possible to participate.

“It continues to be important to continue observing FACTS – wear face coverings, avoid crowds, clean hands, observe two-metres distancing, and self-isolate and book a test if you have symptoms.

“And the all-important ‘stay at home’ message is still in place, including avoiding non-essential travel.

“The combination of testing and following the really important public health guidance will help support efforts to move to a less restrictive way of life in the weeks and months ahead.”

Published: Friday, 5th March 2021