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Thursday, December 9, 2021

Some people travelling up to four hours to get PCR test – McDonald

Sinn Féin leader Mary Lou McDonald has claimed that people have to travel up to four hours in order to get a PCR test.

This has prompted the Sinn Féin leader to call for an immediate increase in testing capacity.

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Concerns have been expressed by Opposition parties over the struggles people are having when trying to book a PCR test as only Letterkenny testing centre had available testing slots today while just four centres nationally have slots available for tomorrow.

The HSE stated that it’s currently trying to provide more tests but will be prioritising them based on clinical need.

While speaking in the Dáil, McDonald stated, “For people experiencing symptoms or in a household where someone is experiencing symptoms, not being able to access these tests is frustrating and frightening for people.”

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She added, “Indeed, many have to travel up to four hours for a test – that’s not acceptable.”

Acknowledging the frustration, Deputy Chief Medical Officer Dr. Ronan Glynn said that as many as 700,000 people have the flu, cold or Covid-like symptoms while adding that the system has to prioritise as it can only accommodate 200,000 tests a week.

Taoiseach Micheál Martin stated that around 210,000 tests have been carried out in the last week as there has been a “very significant expansion of PCR testing”.

IMAGE – “Sinn Féin President Mary Lou McDonald and Vice President Michelle O’Neill” by Sinn Féin is licensed under CCBY2.0

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