5m
3 Sep 2020

Matt Hancock announces £500m funding to increase Covid-19 testing capacity

Reporter

Health Secretary Matt Hancock has announced that over half a billion pounds will be spent to increase Covid-19 testing capacity and to help develop new, quicker tests – a plan that could reduce and even eliminate the need for widespread community lockdowns if any outbreaks can be quickly targeted.

But the progress on expanding testing comes on the same day that new figures suggest England’s test and trace system is still struggling to reach expectations.

Less than 70 per cent of close contacts of people who’ve tested positive for Covid-19 in England were traced in the week ending the 26th of August. That’s the lowest since the system was launched.