The government said in a statement that people who work or live in the city will be tested, regardless of if they are experiencing symptoms or not.
New technology, including swab tests and lateral flow tests, will allow test results to be provided within an hour or less without lab processing, the government added.
“These more advanced tests will help identify infectious individuals who are not displaying symptoms … so they can self-isolate and prevent the virus from spreading,” the nation’s Department of Health stated in the release.
Liverpool, which has nearly 500,000 residents, has had one of the highest infection rates in England, The Associated Press noted, adding that more than 410 cases per 100,000 people have been reported.
Testing in the city is set to serve as an example of how the United Kingdom may be able to implement large-scale testing. Several testing sites will be set up across the city.
“These tests will help identify the many thousands of people in the city who don’t have symptoms but can still infect others without knowing. Dependent on their success in Liverpool, we will aim to distribute millions of these new rapid tests between now and Christmas and empower local communities to use them to drive down transmission in their areas,” Prime Minister Boris Johnson said. “It is early days, but this kind of mass testing has the potential to be a powerful new weapon in our fight against COVID-19.”
The U.K. currently has 1,057,021 COVID-19 cases and 46,943 total deaths, according to Johns Hopkins University.