O2 arena coronavirus test centre workers in tears as red tape stops them from getting swabs from more NHS staff – The Sun

STAFF working on testing NHS staff have revealed a new shambles at London’s O2 complex.

The site is one of several set up to swab 500,000 NHS workers.

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But yesterday few cars pulled up to get checked.

Those that did were told they must have their NHS ID and an email confirming a slot.

A source said: “Some people break down in tears because they want to help but can’t because of all the red tape.”

Members of the public who turn up hoping to get checked are turned away and told to go home and self-isolate.

All of this adds to the already shambolic scenes at other testing sites at Chessington, Surrey and IKEA in Wembley, North London.


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On Friday just six staff from Boots carried out 75 tests by 1pm at Chessington – before it astonishingly closed for an hour for lunch.

And they were still operating an ‘appointment only’ entry despite dozens of nurses arriving during the day not knowing they couldn’t just turn up.

It all made a mockery of Health Secretary Matt Hancock’s pledge to be conducting 100,000 tests per day by the end of April.

Cabinet Office Minister Michael Gove promised to get to the cause of the testing hold-ups.

He told The Sun on Sunday: “Thank you. It’s that kind of investigative work that makes sure we can cut through red tape.”

Meanwhile a midwife at St Thomas's Hospital in London told The Sun on Sunday how she had been trying to book a test for a week but had been unable to do so. She said: "I felt ill a week ago and had a temperature and so did my husband so I self-isolated and contacted work to let them know.

"They said to call Occupational Health and I did and they said they didn't know how to book a test as they hadn't seen any information on booking slots.

"I was surprised to hear that and also disappointed because I want to make sure I'm OK before I go back to work."

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