Backlog of 185,000 Covid-19 tests as swabs sent abroad

The UK’s test-and-trace system for coronavirus has a backlog of nearly 200,000 swabs, resulting in samples being sent to laboratories in Italy and Germany as the Government’s privately run system struggles to keep up with demand.

There is evidence that only a fraction of the samples that the Government says it has capacity for are being carried out. The figures were obtained by The Sunday Times suggest that just 62,000 daily tests were carried out in the first week of September by a system claimed to have a capacity for 375,000.

The Department for Health and Social Care (DHSC) has not denied that it is sending swabs abroad, saying that there had been “significant” demand for tests, including from people “who do not have symptoms and are not otherwise eligible”.

Full story in The i news, 13 September 2020

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