Priority COVID-19 testing for healthcare staff ‘long overdue’, says BMA

by BMA media team Press release from the BMA.
Location: UK
Published: Friday 27 March 2020
Contract and pen article illustration

Responding to the announcement that healthcare workers who are self-isolating will be tested for COVID-19 in the coming days, Dr Chaand Nagpaul, BMA council chair, said:

“The BMA has been calling for healthcare workers to be tested as a matter of urgency for weeks now, so this announcement is long overdue. 

“For every healthy member of staff at home self-isolating needlessly when they do not have the virus, the NHS is short of someone that could be providing vital care to patients on the frontline. A negative test for them and their household would allow them to return to work.

“This is incredibly frustrating for doctors and their colleagues, who want to be working and supporting their colleagues and patients – but cannot due to lack of testing so far.

“While the Government has announced this this will commence with certain categories of staff, it is crucial that these tests are rolled out to all healthcare workers and their households urgently – so that if they do test negative, they can support the health service at a time when they are needed most.”

ENDS

Notes to editors

The BMA is a trade union representing and negotiating on behalf of all doctors in the UK. A leading voice advocating for outstanding health care and a healthy population. An association providing members with excellent individual services and support throughout their lives.

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