Sinn Féin MLA Emma Rogan has called on Health Minister Robin Swann to ensure that people can access COVID-19 testing close to their homes and that adequate amounts of home testing kits are made available.
The South Down MLA was speaking amid growing concerns over a chronic lack of testing kits.
Emma Rogan said:
“I have been contacted by many constituents concerned about the chronic lack of home testing kits available to people in the north.
“There have been numerous reports of people unable to travel to a testing facility after being told there were no more home testing kits available.
“We also have the bizarre situation where people are now being told they have to travel to Scotland to access testing.
“Given the sharp rise in cases, this is deeply concerning. Testing capacity needs to be ramped up rather than delayed.
“I would call on the Minister and the Public Health Agency to locate a testing centre in the Downpatrick area to ensure a system that delivers speedy and easy access to kits for all, and in particular vulnerable citizens.
“He must also ensure that adequate volumes of home testing kits are available to tackle the virus and realise the extent of the spread. This cannot be left to a lottery.”