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Author Topic: PCR tests not available to book in Berkshire this morning  (Read 626 times)
Cookham v Coronavirus
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« on: December 30, 2021, 02:16:22 PM »

People in Berkshire hoping to get a PCR test before celebrating New Year's Eve are currently out of luck as there are no appointments available anywhere in the county.

The government's website says there are no drive-through or walk-in test appointments available as of around 8am on Thursday, December 30.

Home tests are still available to order but it may be the case they do not arrive in time for New Year's Eve tomorrow (Friday, December 31).

Prime Minister Boris Johnson has urged people to get tested before going out on New Year's Eve, but that is proving extremely difficult for people in Berkshire as there is nowhere to go.

Unlike Wales and Scotland, no restrictions have been put in place in England, which means people can still head to bars and nightclubs to see in 2022.

The shortage of PCR tests is coupled with another shortage of lateral flow tests, which are generally used for people not displaying Covid symptoms.

National case numbers are at their highest yet, and while the new Omicron variant is seen to be milder than other variants of the virus, hospital admissions have been rising.

The situation over appointments may change over the course of the day, and people wanting a test are advised to keep checking.

A UK Health Security Agency spokesperson said almost eight million test kits would be made available to pharmacies by New Year’s Eve.

The spokesman said: “The UK’s testing programme is the biggest in Europe with almost 400 million tests carried out since the start of the pandemic.

“We are delivering record numbers of lateral flow tests to pharmacies across the country, with almost eight million test kits being made available to pharmacies between today and New Year’s Eve.

“We have made 100,000 more PCR booking slots available per day since mid-December and we are continuing to rapidly expand capacity – with over half a million tests carried out on 23 December alone and delivery capacity doubled to 900,000 PCR and LFD test kits a day.

“If you have not been able to get the test you need from gov.uk, please keep checking every few hours as more PCR and LFD tests become available every day.”

The latest figures show 10,462 people were in hospital in England with Covid-19 as of 8am on Wednesday, December 29, according to figures from NHS England.

This is up 48 per cent from a week earlier and is the highest number since March 1.

During the second wave of coronavirus, the number peaked at 34,336 on January 18.

In London, 3,310 people were in hospital with Covid-19 on December 29, up 63 per cent week-on-week and the highest number since February 16.

The second-wave peak for London was 7,917 on January 18.

Coronavirus rates in Berkshire

These are the case numbers per 100,000 people in the week leading up to Christmas Day.

Bracknell Forest: 1,427.9 up from 1,058.3
Reading: 1,181.9 up from 1,145.1
Slough: 933.3 up from 724.7
West Berkshire: 1,034.9 up from 925.8
Windsor and Maidenhead 1,461.6 up from 1,207.1
Wokingham 1,360.2 up from 1,132
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