Testing kits that are due to arrive in the UK were found to have been contaminated with coronavirus, according to reports. The Government claims there is currently a capacity to carry out 11,000 tests a day, while the aim is to carry out 25,000 tests per day by mid-April. Last week, Health Secretary Matt Hancock said 3.5 million antibody tests have been ordered, while Britain has been sourcing kits from private companies to help meet demand. But according to the Daily Telegraph, it was discovered that key components ordered from Eurofins, a company based in Luxembourg, had been contaminated with Covid-19.
The report claims that Eurofins has warned laboratories in the UK that a delivery of parts referred to as ‘probes and primers’ had been contaminated. Eurofins said that the issue can be resolved by ‘proper cleaning’ but admitted the discovery would result in a delay.
A spokesperson for Eurofins told the Telegraph: ‘In rare occasions, delays in some orders may occur if based on Eurofins Genomics stringent quality and environmental control procedures, manufacturing of a product may not meet the quality or purity criteria set by Eurofins Genomics. ‘We are aware that contaminations of the nature you mentioned have been observed by several primers and probes manufacturers around the world after they produced SARS-COV2 positive controls. ‘Those initial problems can be easily resolved by proper cleaning and production segregation procedures.’
The UK is under increased pressure to test more people to get ahead of the coronavirus pandemic. But Tony Blair has warned that ‘virtually everybody’ in the UK would need to be tested multiple times. ‘Your risk, obviously, is as you start to ease the lockdown, how do you then deal with any resurgence of the disease? This, of course, is what they’re now dealing with in China and South Korea, and elsewhere,’ he told Sky News on Sunday.
‘Unless you have that testing capability that you can apply at scale, and by the way when I say mass testing I mean I actually think you will need to get to the point where you’ve got the capability, and I assume we’re preparing for this now, of testing literally a very large proportion of the entire population. ‘You may have to do those tests two or three different times because you need all the time to be able to track what’s happening with the disease, to learn where, for example, there may be a surge or a hotspot of it, and take immediate action.’
PULLED FROM metro.co.uk