World News – GB – Scots’ demand for Covid testing to reach top 50,000 during winter


Covid: The next four months could be one of the most difficult times of your life – Professor Devi Sridhar

But the next few months are also expected to see the amount of daily tests available increase to 65,000 as demand increases, according to the clinical and scientific review of the Scottish Government’s testing strategy

He recommends that the priority for further testing now be focused on older Scots who are more likely to suffer from serious illness as a result of contracting coronavirus, especially residents of nursing homes , as well as staff and visitors

Screening of health workers should also be expanded, including those dealing with more vulnerable Scots and there should be more testing on ‘close contacts’ of confirmed positive cases

There is a capacity of around 30,000 tests per day in Scotland, of which around two-thirds are carried out by the UK government’s Lighthouse system and the rest by the NHS in Scotland

But demand is likely to skyrocket in the coming winter months, as more people develop cough and fever symptoms from classic colds and flu

The review states: « The current best understanding of the demand is that approximately 54,000 tests per day are expected to be required by December 2020 »

However, there should be « sufficient capacity » to meet these needs, as the current expansion of the system means there should be around 65,000 days of testing available by December.

Part of this will come from three new regional laboratory centers which will open in November and December and, when fully functional, will provide at least 22,000 additional tests per day for NHS Scotland

The increase in demand will be driven by an increase of around 35,000 people per day tested for symptoms alone, as well as more testing for inpatients, NHS staff and additional testing for outbreaks

The review suggests the Scottish government may need to prioritize testing on the most vulnerable groups, with a focus on ‘asymptomatic transmission’ in nursing homes

« This could include extending routine testing to staff visiting nursing homes, stratified by risk – focusing first, for example, on those who provide personal care in close contact to residents nursing homes – to designated visitors to nursing homes and staff who provide home care to the most vulnerable, ”adds the review

« We also recommend expanding the screening of health workers, focusing on those caring for the most vulnerable patient groups and potentially also in areas where community prevalence is higher »

Head nurse Professor Fiona McQueen says there is also a need to focus on faster processing of test results

« NHS Scotland’s Test and Protect system is working well, even with an increase in cases, and the country is on track to expand its overall testing capacity to 65,000 tests per day in winter, » he said. she declared

« However, while the full scale of the pandemic in Scotland during the winter months is currently unknown, it is essential that more focus be placed on reducing test turnaround times so that we can further reduce the transmission by enabling rapid contact tracing and isolation of close contacts Initiatives such as the additional regional laboratories of NHS Scotland will support this

Coronavirus, Scottish government, NHS Scotland, healthcare

News from the world – GB – Scots’ demand for Covid testing to reach 50,000 in winter



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