The Speaker
Saturday, 20 July 2024 – 07:36

UK Coronavirus mass home testing could be possible within days

Millions of new coronavirus testing kits could be ready for members of the public to order within days, according to Public Health England.

Professor Sharon Peacock, director of the National Infection Service at Public Health England said on Wednesday that millions of testing kits have been ordered and could be used by medical professionals and then the wider community ‘in the near future’ – and in days, rather than weeks or months, as had been previously thought.

Speaking to Parliament’s Science and Technology Committee, the Professor said mass testing in the UK could be possible by next week. She said;

“Several million tests have been purchased for use. These are brand new products. We have to be clear they work as they are claimed to do,”

“Once they have been tested this week and the bulk of tests arrive, they will be distributed into the community.”

The tests, which involve pricking the finger to produce a drop of blood, produce results in 10 to 15 minutes to identify whether people have got or have recovered from COVID-19. It is hoped that mass testing could allow some return to normality for many much sooner than may have been previously thought.

It is widely thought that having COVID-19 makes people immune to the disease, or that if they get it a second time, they will not transmit the disease to others.

Amazon has agreed to distribute the tests, and they may also go on sale in chemist shops. It is thought that if there is to be a cost for the kits, that this would be small.

Other countries across Europe and the world are also ordering the tests.


Photo Credit: HM Treasury via Flickr under licence (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)

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