Carika Weldon: public ‘demanding, even harassing, frontline workers’ over tests
A surge in test demand has put staff in the lab leading the fight against Covid-19 under increased pressure.
Carika Weldon, who heads Molecular Diagnostics Laboratory in the East End, said on Twitter that staff had worked long hours – and some had also had to cope with harassment.
Dr Weldon wrote that members of the public had been “demanding, even harassing, frontline workers” for same-day results against the backdrop of increased testing.
She said on Tuesday that she and other staff had left the lab at 3am that day and that their drive and dedication had been the “best silver lining” of the pandemic.
Dr Weldon added: “Happy to report that 87 per cent of Labour Day’s samples were resulted by 3.30am. E-mails sent at 8am.
“The pending 13 per cent are those tested after 12.30pm at Clocktower in Dockyard and those tested after 3pm at Perot.
“Samples arrived at the lab between 4pm and 5.30pm, which was one of the last samples received of the day.”
A total of 19,342 Covid-19 test results were received in the week to last Sunday, compared to 18,831 the previous week.
Kim Wilson, the Minister of Health, appealed to the public to be patient when waiting for Covid-19 results.
Ms Wilson said: “The PCR Covid-19 test result turnaround time is expected to be a minimum of 24 hours, though results may take longer.”
She told the public: “If you have not received a negative test result by e-mail in 36 hours, please contact your doctor as they may have been sent your positive test result.
“As a reminder, if you are feeling unwell, please do not leave home until you receive a negative test result.”