UK COVID-19 test system jam endangers key services


LONDON, September 15 (.) – Britain’s COVID-19 testing system presented a demand bottleneck on Tuesday that barred many people, including doctors, from accessing tests, creating a potential threat to them. essential health services, several organizations said. of the health sector.

In an attempt to reduce one of the highest death rates from coronavirus in the West, Prime Minister Boris Johnson vowed in May to create a “world-class” system to screen and track people exposed to the virus.

“Our members tell us that the lack of access to testing by staff is a major obstacle to their ability to provide services,” said Layla McCay, director of the Confederation of National Health System (NHS), which represents the organizations across the health sector.

“We are very concerned that some people with symptoms of COVID-19, including healthcare workers and their families, are having difficulty accessing tests due to insufficient laboratory capacity. “

Attempts by journalists to. to get a COVID-19 test on Tuesday were greeted with the following notice on the government website: “This department is currently very busy. More tests should be available later. “

Chris Hopson, Head of NHS Suppliers, who represents the hospital consortia in England, noted that an increasing number of staff are unable to go to work because they or their partners have symptoms similar to COVID-19 and could not take the test.

The UK is advising people with symptoms to get tested, although it says the system has been overwhelmed by asymptomatic people requesting testing. Some schools have forced sick students to be tested or to be absent for 14 days.

The health ministry said the country’s COVID-19 screening capacity was the highest ever, but there was “significant demand” from people who were symptom-free.

“New inventory and home testing kits are available daily for people with symptoms and we are focusing the testing capacity on the areas that need it most. (Reported by Andrew MacAskill and Guy Faulconbridge; edited by David Clarke, translated by Michael Susin at the Gdansk press room)

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