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Essential workers, including convenience retailers and their staff, are eligible for COVID-19 testing. In England, Scotland or Northern Ireland the tests for essential workers are prioritised over the tests available for the wider public through the NHS.

Employers of essential workers can refer their staff for COVID-19 testing through a digital employer portal. To obtain access to the portal, employers must email with: organisation name, nature of the organisation’s business, region, names (where possible) and email addresses of up to 2 users who will load essential worker contact details. Once employer details have been verified, login credentials will be issued for the employer referral portal.

Employers can also make essential workers aware that they can book a COVID-19 test through the self-referral portal, where a drive-through appointment or home test can be chosen. More information is available here.

ACS has developed a template letter that retailers can use to communicate with staff over email, post or display in staff rooms about how to self-refer for testing.