Boots are launching a new coronavirus testing service into stores in the next two weeks with results available in just 12 minutes.
The test has proved 97 percent accurate in trials and should be available within a fortnight as 200 branches are expected to offer tests by Christmas.
The test has proved 97 percent accurate in trials and should be available in 200 branches by Christmas[/caption]
Boots are launching the new coronavirus testing service into stores with results available in just 12 minutes[/caption]
Boots will initially charge £120 for the rapid test but this is likely to fall if demand grows according Chief executive Sebastian James.
He added that it was the first step toward mass testing on high streets and a way to allow Britons to get on with their lives again.
The tests are aimed at those who have no symptoms but are seeking peace of mind but anyone who suspects they may have Covid-19 is still being advised to visit an NHS testing station.
Boots have now bought 100 portable devices from US diagnostics firm Lumira that are able to confirm a positive test in just minutes.
Customers can book through an online app while tests are administered by trained staff in private rooms in a local store.
The company believes that the service will ease pressure on NHS and government testing programmes and could help get the country back to ‘normal’ again.
As is stands, anyone who tests positive for coronavirus is told to self-isolate for 10 days.
Others that live with someone who has symptoms – or if they’ve been contacted by Test and Trace – must self-isolate for 14 days.
The service is already available in ten stores in total, which are located in London, Birmingham, Manchester, Edinburgh and Glasgow for customers travelling to UAE, with plans to roll out a wider service to over 50 stores across the UK over the next few weeks.
Depending on demand and feedback, the launch may extend to 200 stores over the coming months.
TESTS FOR TRAVEL
The tests could also allow people to travel, to mix with friends and family and to return to offices.
Chief executive Sebastian James said: “We don’t want to make a profit out of it. We are just covering our costs as there is a big upfront outlay for all the kit.
“My thinking is that if the volume is large we will be able to bring the price down. I’m hoping lots of people will want to do it and if they do, then we can make the price more accessible.
“We believe we are the cheapest private test. We think it is pretty good value compared to others on the high street, which range from £270 at the very expensive end to about £150 in online clinics.
“Once it becomes more accessible in terms of cost it could be a very important weapon in the armoury against Covid.”
The £120 fees covers third party laboratory testing, courier services, digital services, staff wages and VAT.
Boots is also installing consultation rooms.
It comes after it was revealed Prime Minister Boris Johnson could cut the self-isolation period by half after fears Brits were ignored the Track and Trace system, according to the Telegraph.
Mr Johnson is said to have become “disillusioned” with Test and Trace statistics after it was proved some were incorrect.
New data showed that just 10.9 per cent of people who were contacted by NHS Test and Trace isolated for 14 days.
Mark Harper, a former chief whip, also voiced the concern within the Tory backbench and said: “The contact tracing simply isn’t good enough.
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