Covid: Lateral flow tests unavailable again despite Boris Johnson denying shortage

Tests aren’t available for home delivery but can be picked up from pharmacies

Holly Bancroft
Tuesday 14 December 2021 09:16 GMT
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Lateral flow tests are unavailable for home delivery from the government website for the second day running.

People trying to get a test on Tuesday morning were told that “there are no rapid lateral flow tests available to order today for home delivery” but that tests can still be collected from pharmacies.

A rush of people trying to get hold of home tests has left the government struggling to meet demand.

On Monday, the UK Health Security Agency said that “due to exceptionally high demand, ordering lateral flow tests on gov.uk has been temporarily suspended to fulfil existing orders.”

Prime minister Boris Johnson said there was a “ready supply” of lateral flow tests. When asked about the issues with the website during a visit to a vaccination clinic in West London, he said: “They can get those tests, we do have a ready supply of lateral flow tests.

“If you can’t get one online for any reason, then there are amply supplies in the shops.”

Deputy prime minister Dominic Raab insisted the issue with ordering lateral flow tests was not down to a lack of tests.

He told BBC Breakfast on Tuesday: “The problem isn’t supply and volume, the problem is the allocation and distribution, or the delivery, of it.

“We know that in relation to the online system there were some challenges yesterday and that’s partly because of the proportion they’ve got each day.

“We’re making sure that however people may wish to order them and procure them, we’re ramping up not just the capacity... but the ability to distribute and to deliver.”

The Uk Health Security Agency advised people to collect test kits from local pharmacies, some community sites and some schools and colleges.

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