New Covid 19 testing pilot scheme at Moy Park

Dessie Blackadder

Reporter:

Dessie Blackadder

A Lateral Flow Device (LFD) testing pilot has been rolled out at lMoy Park sites across Northern Ireland and England as part of the Government’s UK-wide continuing drive to increase the availability of testing.

The pilot aims to provide vital information to help inform further rollout of the rapid testing technology in future. It is part of the government’s plan to develop new technologies which will safely enable the country to go about life as normally as possible.

All staff and visitors to Moy Park sites who are asymptomatic are now able to be tested. With around 1 in 3 individuals with Covid-19 not displaying symptoms, testing helps to protect staff and visitors by quickly identifying those that need to isolate, ensuring they did not unknowingly pass on the virus.

Tests provide results within 30 minutes and feed directly into the national testing database. Rapid testing is part of the UK Government’s programme to introduce mass testing across the country.

Health Minister Lord Bethell said: “We’ve already come so far since first setting up a national testing programme at an unprecedented pace to help counter COVID-19, but we continue to strive to go further, faster.

“Innovations such as LFD testing hold the key to the next phase of our ambition to see mass, rapid testing available to people across the country.

“I’m delighted that Moy Park is working with us to pilot the latest technology and I look forward to seeing the fruits of their labour, both in helping target the virus locally, and helping find ways to roll this technology out further soon.”

Baroness Dido Harding, Interim Executive Chair of the National Institute for Health Protection, said:

“NHS Test and Trace continues to play a leading role in the fight against COVID-19 with over 32 million tests processed so far.

“The work of Moy Park across its sites will be essential in helping us explore the benefits of new technology in LFD testing.

“This pilot is one of many which will lay the foundations for the next phase of NHS Test and Trace – rapid testing - which will allow us to test even more people, even more quickly.

Kirsty Wilkins, HR & Performance Director at Moy Park said:

“We are proud to be playing our part to help tackle the spread of coronavirus by participating in the Department of Health and Social Care’s (DHSC) rapid testing pilot Programme.

“Rapid asymptomatic testing is considered an important element of the national strategy to tackle the pandemic and this pilot will allow DHSC to gather more data to help define the best strategy moving forward, protecting those most vulnerable in our society.

“Safety is a condition at Moy Park and we continue to maintain the highest level of vigilance to stop the virus coming into our facilities and help prevent its transmission. Participation in the pilot scheme runs in tandem with the rigorous safety protocols we have in place such as thermal temperature scanning, enhanced cleaning and hygiene regimes, Perspex screens, additional PPE and social distancing measures.”

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