16 Sep Coronavirus: What it’s like trying to get a COVID test right now | UK News
People in England are still struggling to get a coronavirus test – a problem that the government says could take weeks to solve.
Sky News has spoken to people at testing sites in some of the country’s hotspots, who have shared their frustrations of trying to take a coronavirus test so they can get back to work and school.
Samantha Scott, Bolton: “I was offered a test in Inverness”
To be honest I feel stressed, rather stressed, and with me feeling quite poorly as well you just don’t want to have to be going out of your way and walking – you feel like you’re doing something wrong because you’re out.
I’ve walked three-and-a-half miles and I have to walk another three-and-a-half miles home now just to get this test… because you’re not allowed to use public services like taxis and buses. Unfortunately I don’t drive – and there were no other testing centres.
They offered me a test in Inverness in Scotland on the first day I got back (from a holiday) – so it’s just been continuously trying online, days, days, hours, hours… very hard and stressful.
Somebody needs to give them (the government) a kick up the bum, that’s all I can say really. How do they expect people to walk miles?
Stephen Ahern, with children Jude and Penny, Bolton: “It should be easier”
We tried to book in for a test, I was online all day on Tuesday and managed to finally get a test about 8.30pm for a test on Wednesday. We’re about 10 miles away but we drive so we took anything we could get.
We just want to get the kids back in school because they’ve missed enough already but everyone’s got to be safe… and I’m unpaid on the days I’m off so I need the money.
It should be easier. We were saying last night after struggling to get a test booked – how are older people going to get on? They’re not going to be able to jump on a smartphone, they won’t be able to chase down these tests when they’re released.
I appreciate it’s tricky, but it seems like there should be other ways to access these tests as well. Resources need to be spread out evenly across the country. Also… in a high-risk area, more tests need to be put into this area straightaway.
Charlie Lewis and daughter Ava, Birmingham: “There’s been a miscommunication”
It’s been very frustrating, we’ve been trying now for seven days to try and get us both an appointment with no success – it either says it’s busy or it’s unavailable, try again in two hours’ time, three hours’ time… but we’ve come up today and got a test straightaway.
However, they have just told me they’re not accepting walk-ins anymore now, that they’ve fully done their walk-ins for today.
It’s been frustrating because I want to go back to work and I want Ava to go back in to education. But the schools tell us one thing, and we’ve come in here today and they told us the polar opposite – that I shouldn’t be coming for a test for Ava and I should just stay home for 14 days.
I think that’s a miscommunication between the government, schools and the testing centres themselves.
Kamel Hawwash, and son Adam, Birmingham: “It’s a complete failure by the government”
I’ve been trying for three days now, but I wasn’t able to book until Tuesday night just after 8pm. Most of the time it crashed, and you could try walk-in and switch to coming in and drive-through but that didn’t work and then suddenly a few appointments came through.
The first frustration is my son not being at school, so that’s really what a lot of parents are feeling. We asked a lot of the other parents, and quite a few of them have got kids with the same symptoms (sore throat) but have been at school, so that seemed really strange.
The system is very frustrating… it’s been seven months and they haven’t sorted the track and trace, and there is no real track and trace – so it’s been really frustrating.
I just think it’s a complete failure for the government… Boris Johnson talks about 10 million tests a day – well, it’s wishful thinking.
Meriem Bourjila, Luton: “We need help and support”
The booking… from last Sunday when we first had symptoms, we couldn’t get one until today, so it was hard.
We worried a lot… so now we need to wait like three days to see what’s happened.
It’s really difficult, we really need help and support and especially for kids, because they can’t go to school, they’re at home for 14 days, they don’t know what’s happened – more tests for people, that would be great.