A NORTH-EAST telecommunications firm is supporting its staff and other regional businesses through its investment in rapid Covid tests.

Stockton-based Odyssey Systems is supplying staff with rapid Covid tests as part of its commitment to keep office-based employees and clients safe.

Andrew Middlemiss, finance director of the firm, said the lateral flow tests offer peace of mind to employees and engineers required to visit clients’ premises.

The tests, purchased from Durham-based Medi-Inn UK, work in a similar way to a pregnancy test and detect the presence of Covid-19 within 15 minutes.

This allows employers to identify any contagious staff and ensure they immediately self-isolate, minimising the risk of passing on the virus.

Tests are on-site by taking samples from the nose and throat, with the result then displayed via a portable immunoassay screening cassette.

Staff at Odyssey Systems are asked to take a test once a week, as part of the company’s working procedures.

Andrew Middlemiss said: “Our staff work remotely whenever possible but several roles require a presence in the office or, in the case of installing equipment or delivering remote working solutions, our engineers must attend a client’s premises.

“The investment in lateral flow tests further strengthens the strict set of Covid-safe policies that our staff follow.

“Odyssey is dedicated to the health and welfare of its employees and is committed to minimising the risk of anyone falling ill with the virus or becoming contagious.”

Wayne Dobson, director of Medi-Inn, which supplies medical and hygiene consumables such as PPE and disinfectant, says the company is proud to play a part in protecting businesses and their employees.

He said: “To be able to play a part in helping businesses roll out effective testing programmes to protect their businesses and workforce is something we are really proud of.

“It’s reassuring to see so many businesses being responsible, purchasing PPE and tests to try and keep Covid-19 out of the workplace as much as possible.”

Odyssey Systems says it has been busy during the pandemic, initially working with businesses to ensure employees can work remotely.

It has also been supporting clients in maintaining and updating systems.