Wednesday 16 December 2020 11:17 am

New biotech rapid-testing facility to help London 'return to normality'

A biotech company, Biogroup is launching a new rapid-testing facility in London, which will boost testing capacity in the capital by 100,000 tests a week.

Biogroup UK is setting-up an RT-PCR (RealTime Reverse Transcription Polymerase Chain Reaction) test service, initially via two pop-up testing centres in Marylebone and Notting Hill to detect the presence of the virus.

Read more: Test and Trace to scrap 14-day isolation period for Covid contacts

The swabs will then be sent to a MegaLab in Shepherds Bush, that will process results within 24-hours.

The biotech firm boasts an impressive efficiency record on its testing services, identifying 99 per cent of infections within this 24-hour period.

Dr. Astrid Gouillard, chairman of Biogroup UK said: “Testing is central in the fight to control the spread of the virus. It allows those infected to be isolated to prevent or at least slow down the number of new infections. It is also key in the future management of the pandemic, establishing how much the virus has spread across the broader population and understanding the level of immunity across the UK.”

Read more: Redbridge overtakes Ealing: How many Covid-19 infections are there in your local borough?

“The additional capacity from private labs for both corporates and consumers will considerably help people return to normality by reducing self-isolation and re-opening the country to business travel,” he concluded.

Despite the government announcing today that 137,000 people got the Covid vaccine within the first week, the news that London has moved into Tier 3 shows that we are still some way from wide-spread vaccinations and any sense of normality.

Read more: Covid vaccine: 138,000 people in UK get Pfizer jab in first week

In the mean time, effective testing facilities like the one being lunched by Biogroup UK hold the key to keeping down infection rates in the capital and the rest the UK.

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