Five million "ground-breaking" rapid coronavirus tests will be rolled out to hospitals, care homes, and labs across the U.K. in order to increase testing capacity ahead of cold and flu season.
The tests will help clinicians and the NHS to test and trace the virus in order to prevent its spread. The test will be able to detect the virus in 60 to 90 minutes as well as other viruses like the flu and respiratory syncytial virus. They do not require a health professional to operate, meaning that the tests can be used in non-clinical settings.
"The fact these tests can detect flu, as well as COVID-19, will be hugely beneficial as we head into winter, so patients can follow the right advice to protect themselves and others," said Matt Hancock, the U.K. Health Secretary.
There are two types of tests available; both require processing through a DNA COVID-19 test machine. The DNA COVID-19 test machines are currently functioning in a number of London hospitals, located in the cancer and maternity wards to protect those at the most risk.