You are here: Home » Current Affairs » Coronavirus » News
Business Standard

Huge questions for UK govt after Covid-19 positive cases triple in days

The British government faced huge questions Monday over its coronavirus testing system after a big increase in the number of positive cases over the weekend that was blamed on a technical glitch

Topics
UK govt | Coronavirus

AP  |  London 

Covid-19 coronavirus

The British government faced huge questions Monday over its testing system after a big increase in the number of positive cases over the weekend that was blamed on a technical glitch.

The main opposition Labour Party has asked the government why the cases were not tabulated when they should have been.

Health Secretary Matt Hancock is due to make a statement to lawmakers later Monday.

Public health officials revealed Sunday that 15,841 virus cases weren't tabulated from September 25 to October 2.

While all of those who tested positive were informed of the results, authorities weren't able to trace and notify the people they had come in contact with, Public Health England said.

The government said the technical issue was discovered Friday night and has now been resolved.

The previously unreported cases were added to the government's daily figures over the weekend, boosting new cases to 12,872 on Saturday and 22,961 on Sunday.

That compares with about 7,000 cases on each of the previous four days.

Jonathan Ashworth, Labour's spokesman on health issues, described the error as shambolic'' and said the public will be understandably alarmed.''

He said Hancock "should come to the House of Commons on Monday to explain what on earth has happened, what impact it has had on our ability to contain this virus and what he plans to do to fix test and trace.

The reporting error is just the latest problem with Britain's test and trace system, which is seen as crucial to slowing the spread of COVID-19 and reducing the need for further limits on social interaction.

Lawmakers from all parties have previously criticized Prime Minister Boris Johnson's Conservative government for a shortage of testing capacity and delays in notifying people of their test results.

Paul Hunter, a professor in medicine at the University of East Anglia, said the news about the glitch is very disappointing.

For the test, track and trace system to have a real impact on reducing transmission of COVID-19, it is essential that test results are communicated rapidly, he said.

(Only the headline and picture of this report may have been reworked by the Business Standard staff; the rest of the content is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

Dear Reader,


Business Standard has always strived hard to provide up-to-date information and commentary on developments that are of interest to you and have wider political and economic implications for the country and the world. Your encouragement and constant feedback on how to improve our offering have only made our resolve and commitment to these ideals stronger. Even during these difficult times arising out of Covid-19, we continue to remain committed to keeping you informed and updated with credible news, authoritative views and incisive commentary on topical issues of relevance.
We, however, have a request.

As we battle the economic impact of the pandemic, we need your support even more, so that we can continue to offer you more quality content. Our subscription model has seen an encouraging response from many of you, who have subscribed to our online content. More subscription to our online content can only help us achieve the goals of offering you even better and more relevant content. We believe in free, fair and credible journalism. Your support through more subscriptions can help us practise the journalism to which we are committed.

Support quality journalism and subscribe to Business Standard.

Digital Editor

First Published: Mon, October 05 2020. 18:29 IST
RECOMMENDED FOR YOU