UK’s Heathrow Airport unveils new Covid-19 test plan to cut quarantine times – Times of India


LONDON: The UK’s Heathrow Airport, one of many world’s busiest hub airports, on Wednesday unveiled a brand new coronavirus testing facility which it hopes will assist minimize down the obligatory 14-day quarantine interval at present required for travellers into the UK from most nations.
Below the brand new plans, passengers arriving into Heathrow in south-west London will have the ability to guide coronavirus swab exams and have outcomes despatched to them inside seven hours. Travellers can do a second take a look at at dwelling just a few days later after which depart quarantine early in the event that they go each checks.
“We’re working with Heathrow and different airports on this venture,” UK Well being Secretary Matt Hancock instructed ‘Sky Information’.
“The problem is – as a result of the virus can incubate inside your physique with out coming ahead and with out subsequently a take a look at being constructive even should you’ve acquired it – the problem is how to do this testing in a method that we are able to believe sufficient to launch the quarantine,” he stated.
“It’s completely a venture that we’re working with Heathrow on. I clearly perceive the affect of quarantine on so many individuals’s lives. It isn’t one thing anyone would need to do. So I hope that this venture can bear fruit,” he added.
Related double-testing schemes are being utilized in different nations, together with Germany and Iceland, however the proposal wants authorities approval earlier than it will possibly start within the UK.
The exams, that are an identical to the swabs utilized by the UK’s Nationwide Well being Service (NHS), could be booked on-line and price 150 kilos. It’s hoped this might fall to 50 kilos a passenger with the assistance of a state subsidy. These testing unfavorable may depart quarantine 5 to eight days after touchdown, versus 14 days.
Heathrow stated it has been working with aviation companies firm Collinson and logistics agency Swissport on a testing facility which is now “prepared to be used”.
Greater than 13,000 passenger exams will be carried out every day, which will be additional scaled with demand.
The pilot of the brand new testing process might be accessible as a non-public service to anybody with a flight touchdown at Heathrow Terminal 2, and inside just a few weeks for these arriving at Terminal 5, the airport stated.
“A variety of nations which might be ‘red-listed’ have thousands and thousands of people that haven’t got the illness however cannot journey. That is holding again financial restoration,” stated Heathrow CEO John Holland-Kaye.
The information of the brand new testing facility comes amid experiences that UK Cupboard ministers will probably be assembly quickly to debate plans to switch blanket quarantines with the assistance of Covid-19 testing for travellers.
Britain at present operates a system of protected coronavirus journey corridors checklist of nations, with a lot of areas nonetheless thought of excessive threat to permit quarantine-free journey.


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