News, Policy & Media

13Jul

Lateral flow tests to remain free until end of August

The Government has confirmed that lateral flow tests for COVID-19 will be available free-of-charge until at least the end of August. The scheme to provide various settings including workplaces with these lateral flow devices has therefore been extended after doubts were raised over the length of the free-of-charge offer. LFDs have been available via the postal service, and also pharmacy collection programmes. The Government says employers have until 19 July to order free rapid lateral flow tests for employees.

The Government has defended the use of LFDs, especially regarding its goal of identifying asymptomatic cases of COVID-19 and the reduction of its spread in communal spaces such as schools, offices, certain events. “So far 251,126 positive cases have been detected using LFDs that wouldn’t have been found otherwise, helping to break chains of transmission and save lives”, a Government spokesperson stated.

The Government’s LFD programme was fuelled by concern that the virus manifests itself asymptomatically in one-in-three positive cases. Concern over their accuracy has also been set aside by DHSC, new studies have been released by the Government that maintain their use in widespread and home-use screening. 

Labour's shadow health secretary Jonathan Ashworth has criticised any proposal to introduce charges for tests at the same time cases are surging in the country. Whether LFDs will be charged for as part of the Government’s future testing policy remains unclear from the end of Summer.

Related

Public Health England has defended its role in the testing strategy undertaken during the early stag...

Read More >

The DHSC has issued the below briefing note on the requirements of a responsible person in regards o...

Read More >

Please find attached  and below some further information regarding export health certificates f...

Read More >

A senior NHS advisor has defended the use of rapid COVID-19 tests in the deployment of mass testing ...

Read More >

DnaNudge has been announced as a finalist for the XPRIZE Rapid COVID-19 Testing Competition. The com...

Read More >

A new Government testing push will double the amount of COVID-19 testing in the UK, aiming to reach ...

Read More >