Hospital bosses in Bristol have warned that a lack of coronavirus tests for NHS staff is leading to staff absences and services being put at risk,
Staff are having to self-isolate rather than work because they cannot get tests for themselves or family members, says the membership organisation which represents hospital trusts in England.
NHS Providers chief executive, Chris Hopson, said: “It’s clear that there are current capacity problems with the testing regime.
“It’s not just access for tests for staff members themselves, it’s also access for their family members as NHS workers have to self-isolate if their family members are unable to confirm if they have Covid-19 or not.”
Hopson told BBC News that trusts in Bristol as well as in London and Leeds need to know more detail so they can plan accordingly, which could mean creating their own testing facilities.
“Our recent survey showed how concerned trust leaders were about the impact of inadequate testing on their ability to restore services and it’s disappointing that no detailed information on the current problems has been shared,” he said.
Hopson said that patients who are due to come into hospitals for treatment should also be prioritised for tests.
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