Testing increase welcome, but government mustn’t overpromise, says UNISON

Staff want to be tested but ministers must be realistic about what is possible

Commenting on the announcement by health secretary Matt Hancock today (Thursday) that the government is aiming to conduct 100,000 tests by the end of April, UNISON general secretary Dave Prentis said:

“Testing is key in the fight against the virus. It’s clear the UK isn’t doing enough. We can’t waste another minute.

“But the government must be realistic about what’s possible and not overpromise. Delivering over the coming weeks will be crucial to how both frontline staff and the wider public view the government’s ability to manage the crisis.

“Many NHS and care staff at home in isolation want to be tested. They’re frustrated that the lack of testing kits is preventing their return to the frontline. Speed and accuracy are now of the essence.”

Note to editors:
– UNISON is the UK’s largest union, with more than 1.3 million members providing public services – in education, local government, the NHS, police service and energy. They are employed in both the public and private sectors.

Media contacts:
Liz Chinchen M: 07778 158175 E: press@unison.co.uk
Anthony Barnes M: 07834 864794 E: a.barnes@unison.co.uk