Gransnet forums


Corona virus testing

(180 Posts)
annsixty Tue 08-Sep-20 06:58:34

Forgive me if this has already been aired.
Are any of you having to travel several miles for a test?
I spoke to a friend who lives in Cambridge yesterday.
She is 83 and last week had her second op for bladder cancer.
She had to take a 50 mile round trip for the compulsory test before surgery.
She was told it could have been much further.
Is this because the system is overwhelmed, sometimes by over anxious people, or a shortage of the testing kits in some areas?

Iam64 Tue 08-Sep-20 07:45:26

annsixty, four weeks ago, I had a test two miles from home, in our town centre. I had a chest infection but luckily, I didn't have covid.
I heard this week about neighbours having to drive 40 miles for a test.
The rumour is there is a shortage of tests. I don't understand this. A relative is involved in supplying tests and says he can access and supply easily.

MaggieTulliver Tue 08-Sep-20 07:59:09

Yesterday I tried to get a test and there was absolutely nothing available. Today I’d need to travel 50 miles to get one so I’m not going to bother.

Furret Tue 08-Sep-20 08:04:19

A COVID-19 testing centre has just been set up in the cricket club car park at the end of our road and we are not in a Covid hot-spot. Yet.

Furret Tue 08-Sep-20 08:05:44

You can order a testing kit on line. And then you simply post it off from one of the designated post boxes. These are everywhere.

tanith Tue 08-Sep-20 08:05:46

No tests available, is what my GS was told having had his 3 yr old back at nursery for just 3 days she had a raised temperature on Mon and nursery have said unless they get her tested she has stay away for 14 days.
He was told they don’t normally test under 5s but to ring back today.
I don’t know how all this is going to work if they send kids home from school or nursery for tests and there are none available.

Chewbacca Tue 08-Sep-20 08:07:31

My GS, aged 3, has had to have a COVID test this week to allow him back into pre school. DIL tried to book a test online and was directed to a test centre more than 50 miles away, but there is actually a test centre at Manchester Airport, which is less than 10 miles away. She decided to drive there, at a quiet time of day, and see if they would do it without an appointment. And they did. Job done in less than an hour's round journey. A similar experience for several other families in my area too apparently. No idea why people are being directed to test centres far away from where they live when there are much closer ones.

Furret Tue 08-Sep-20 08:10:03

Seems like a postcode lottery. Wonder if these testing centres are set up nationally or by the local authorities. Does anyone know?

Iam64 Tue 08-Sep-20 08:32:04

Chewbacca, thanks for that information. I'm in Gtr Manchester and the airport would have been an easier drive than the one to St Helens which a friend was directed to.
Chaos doesn't seem an unfair description of the government's approach. We all recognise these are unprecedented times, that re-thinks and mistakes will be made but it does seem chaotic.

GrannyGravy13 Tue 08-Sep-20 08:37:14

We have two drive-in centres within 10/15 drive. AC rang last week at 7.30am to get an appointment for GC the only available one was Harwich a 3 hour round trip. The man on the phone told her to ring back at 9am when new slots are released. She did this and got a local appointment at 12 noon, results by text 4am following morning.

Brilliant service!

PamelaJ1 Tue 08-Sep-20 08:49:09

I know that one shouldn’t have to but if you are really worried there are private testing services available. A friend used one near us and it cost £55, cheaper than travelling across the country maybe.
The company will send a kit out by post. I’ve just looked at their site and it is approved by the Ministry of Justice.

Chewbacca Tue 08-Sep-20 08:57:17

It is chaos Iam64! DIL said that when she arrived at the Manchester Airport testing site, there were no more than 6 other cars waiting to be seen. This was about 15.30 on a Monday and so it probably has much busier times. But even so, it's better than having to drive to the far side of Lancashire and back, a round trip of over a hundred miles.

Grannybags Tue 08-Sep-20 09:23:37

My GD2 was sent home from from nursery with a temperature and wasn't allowed back until tested. Nearest available centre was Newport (we live near Bristol!) My DiL had tests posted to them then had to wait 5 days for the result to be emailed to her. Negative as expected.

This meant GD1 couldn't return to school and DiL couldn't get back to work until a week later than expected.

I think it's going be be chaotic throughout the winter as GD2 has a permanent cold!

Witzend Tue 08-Sep-20 09:29:00

The online booking system just isn’t working properly.

A dd with a baby and 2 young children, one of whom was unwell, took ages yesterday to book a test nearby - they were trying to send her many miles away, when there’s a centre in a huge car park a 5 minute drive away.

She did manage to get a test there eventually but was mightily pissed off at all the hassle and waste of time, trying again and again.

Chewbacca Tue 08-Sep-20 09:29:29

They'll all have permanent colds Grannybags! They've been kept at home for 6 months, seeing very few people, and are now back in school and more than likely to pick up ordinary coughs, colds and sniffles. It's the same every September, when a new school year starts. I can see families making repeated trips to testing stations, just so that children can be allowed into school.

25Avalon Tue 08-Sep-20 09:38:54

A friend tells me all online kits have sold out and her results from a test last Wednesday still aren’t back. When she rang yesterday she was told it would be within 24 hours. She was tested not because she had a cold but because her son tested positive over10 days ago and is now back at work. Her quarantine finishes on Thursday.

jenni123 Tue 08-Sep-20 09:43:23

I have had 2 tests and both were delivered to my home 9via Amazon ??) and collected the next morning (via royal Mail) both were negative I am pleased to say.

Dorsetcupcake61 Tue 08-Sep-20 09:44:37

My future SIL works at a drive in test centre,for a while they were very quiet as their test centre wasnt showing up online🙄. He has signed up for work anywhere in UK. Hes employed by SERCO (?) which is private company. I think in general there is a shortage of tests,or maybe it's not organised very well. 🙄. Its probably worth turning up at local drive through centre to see if its quiet

Greeneyedgirl Tue 08-Sep-20 09:45:06

A friend needed a test before moving into sheltered housing. Accessed test centre on his bike - but was only drive thru and closed. Saw a van driver collecting tests who told him that place hardly ever open because they close in “inclement” weather, ie wet or windy. This was a Monday and driver was collecting tests from previous week!
World class - I think not!

Grannygrumps1 Tue 08-Sep-20 09:47:37

I’m not sure if this will help. My best friend is appointed as a very senior manager in charge of a Test and Trace for my area. ( I would rather not say where though).
T&T for an area is set up and paid for by the local council but run by the NHS. So if your area is very small or you council has no funds then you won’t have a test centre.
Tests are free. Please don’t pay for anything online.
You could ring 119 to get a test sent to you at home but I’m not sure if this has changed.

Riggie Tue 08-Sep-20 09:52:09

We seem well served. 2 drive ins and a new one for people who don't drive. Not sure how the latter will work asnita not central and too far away for many people to get to if they dont drive!! I assume it's in an area they think is high risk.

NannyDaft Tue 08-Sep-20 09:58:46

Both my Daughter and her Husband have been tested within 5 miles of their home .

Molli Tue 08-Sep-20 10:01:55

DD had to get a test for her DS (7yrs). She was told her nearest testing station and she said that was over 2 hrs drive. She was then given another testing station and she pointed out that she would need to get an hour long ferry ride! She pointed out she also had an ill 20 month old. They agreed to send her the tests by post and it was all sorted in a few days. We then discovered that the 'advisors' who take the calls just send people to the nearest station as the crow flies! ridiculous.!

Sleepygran Tue 08-Sep-20 10:03:39

Friends of my dd in Ilkley has been told to go to Cardiff for a test!
Another from North Notts has been told to go to Oldham!

Paperbackwriter Tue 08-Sep-20 10:05:27

Furret If you go online at the moment to try to get a home test you'll be told there are none available.

I drove past a massive testing site at Heathrow Airport yesterday. There are probably about 100 marquee things for people to drive into, but I'd say there were maybe only 3 cars there. Lots of staff just hanging about with nothing to do.