A HEALTH expert is urging the public to continue testing for Covid-19 despite a lack of lateral flow tests.

Brighton and Hove registered 4,585 positive cases of Covid in the seven days until January 2.

This is up four per cent on the previous week and equivalent to a weekly rate of 1571.6 per 100,000 residents.

The infection rate in the city is higher than the South East average, which is 1523.5 per 100,000, but lower than the rate for England, which is 1786.8 per 100,000.

Director of Public Health at Brighton and Hove City Council Alistair Hill said case rates in the city are now “the highest they’ve been”.

“Demand for lateral flow tests is high and symptom free testing remains crucial to make sure we’re not spreading Covid,” he said.

“I know many people have struggled to get lateral flow tests over the last few weeks or have used up supplies at home. Please make an effort to pick up more test kits, and if you know someone else is finding it difficult to get hold of some please help them out.

“New stock is made available on the national website throughout the day so keep trying and tests remain easily available from Jubilee Library every day and from Hove Town Hall on Monday to Friday.

“You should be testing whenever you are meeting others or going to places that are likely to have high numbers of people or poor ventilation.”

Alongside testing, Mr Hill said the public must also continue to wear masks, limit contact, ensure good ventilation and maintain good hygiene.

The government has made a number of changes to the Covid guidelines in the last week.

From January 4, it was recommended that secondary school pupils wear face coverings in classrooms.

From 11 January, if you return a positive rapid lateral flow test result, most people will not need to take a PCR test to confirm the result but should self-isolate immediately.

If you will be applying for a Test and Trace Support Payment, you will still need to take a PCR test.

Mr Hill also urged the public to book their first, second or booster vaccines, as well as their flu jab.

The booster is now available for everyone aged 18 or over where it has been three months since your second dose.

Flu vaccines are available now and free for many people.