Just 2,000 key NHS staff have been tested, UK government admits

Health officials urged to abandon strict rules hampering introduction of mass testing

Health officials must abandon strict production rules that are hampering the introduction of mass testing for coronavirus, scientists warned on Wednesday, after the government admitted that just 2,000 of half a million frontline NHS staff have been tested to date.

Procedures drawn up by Public Health England describe the precise chemicals and equipment that must be used to test patients. But with specific reagents in short supply, senior researchers told the Guardian that the UK must find alternatives to avoid more delays, with one arguing: “These are not normal times.”

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