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2 April 2020

DHSC announces new 'five-pillar plan' to increase COVID-19 testing, promising 100,000 tests a day by end of April 2020

Summary

This is the announcement from the Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) of a five-point plan to increase COVID-19 testing, with a pledge to carry out 100,000 tests a day by the end of April 2020. The press release outlines the five pillars of the plan:

  • 'Scale up swab testing in Public Health England (PHE) labs and NHS hospitals for those with a medical need and the most critical workers to 25,000 a day in England by mid to late April, with the aligned testing strategies of the NHS in the devolved administrations benefiting from PHE’s partnership with Roche through a central UK allocation mechanism.
  • Deliver increased commercial swab testing for critical key workers in the NHS across the UK, before then expanding to key workers in other sectors.
  • Develop blood testing to help know if people across the UK have the right antibodies and so have high levels of immunity to coronavirus.
  • Conduct UK-wide surveillance testing to learn more about the spread of the disease and help develop new tests and treatments.
  • Create a new national effort for testing, to build a mass testing capacity for the UK at a completely new scale.'
Source(s)

Gov.uk press release