11:14am Friday 16th May 2014
A Hindu temple is opening its doors for people to get a free TB test as part of a London-wide study.
The Siddhashram Shakti Centre, in Palmerston Road, Wealdstone, is calling on members of the community to take advantage of the free service.
Public Health England is currently running a study into a new test for latent tuberculosis, which can lie dormant in a person’s system for years.
Anyone who has travelled to a country with high tuberculosis rates within the past five years can be tested for free.
Research assistant Louise Cross, who has been testing members of the temple for the past two months, said: “I am really impressed with the response we have had so far.
“The main reason we are trialling a new test for latent TB is because cases are increasing rapidly among people who have been exposed when they have travelled abroad.”
The study, which is being carried out with the support of Queen Mary University of London, aims to test 10,000 people across London.
The temple's spiritual leader Dr Rajeshji Parmar said: “For me this temple is here for the whole community to use as well as being a place of worship.
“We decided to let the screening take place here to because we want to make sure it is as easy for people to get tested.”
The test involved taking a small amount of blood and results are then forwarded on to the patient and their GP.
Anyone who may have travelled to countries including India, Bangladesh, Cambodia, China, Haiti, Indonesia, Iraq, Pakistan, Thailand and large parts of the African continent can get tested.
Those interested in getting tested can do so at the temple every Tuesday and Thursday from 12pm to 2pm and people can call the temple on 0208 426 0678.
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