Where to get lateral flow tests in Newham
- Credit: Emma Bartholomew
People in Newham have reportedly been unable to order rapid coronavirus tests from the government website due to "exceptionally high demand" - but the prime minister has insisted there is no shortage of tests.
On Monday (December 13) people trying to order Covid-19 lateral flow tests were shown a message advising them to "try again later" or to book an appointment at a coronavirus test site instead.
A spokesman for the UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA) said the message was being shown as deliveries had been paused to "fulfil existing orders".
In a statement to the House of Commons yesterday afternoon - December 13 - health secretary Sajid Javid explained the problems were linked to delivery capacity, but said "new arrangements" had been reached with Amazon and others.
Mr Javid said: “There is no shortage of actual tests that are held by UKHSA. There are tens of millions of tests.
"The issue — the limiting factor because of the hugely increased demand — is the ability to deliver the tests and having enough capability to deliver the tests because the current arrangements with Royal Mail alone are not enough.
“There are new arrangements that I’ve reached with Amazon and other delivery methods.”
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Prime minister Boris Johnson also sought to reassure people that the government had enough lateral flow tests to meet demand, saying there was a "ready supply of lateral flow tests".
“If you can’t get one online for any reason, then there are ample supplies in the shops," he said.
"But what I think, if I may say so. What that also shows, is that people are doing the sensible thing, and getting tests as well.”
The problems come less than 24 hours after an announcement that daily testing would be mandatory for people who are double-jabbed and come into contact with someone who has coronavirus.
There are sites across Newham which can conduct Covid testing or where residents can collect LFTs - including Salus Pharmacy in Liberty Bridge Road, Boots in the lower ground floor at Westfield, and Osbon Pharmacy in The Mall.
For a full list of where you can get a lateral flow test in Newham see maps.test-and-trace.nhs.uk/#/.