The Scottish Government has ‘no plans’ to scrap free Covid tests amid reports that they could be scrapped in the UK.
British government officials are reportedly in talks about the future of PCR and lateral flow tests, with a possibility that the free test regime could be scaled down.
It has been reported that free tests may only be provided in high-risk settings – such as schools and hospitals – in an attempt to reduce costs.
But the Scottish Government has ruled out a similar move as they consider regular Covid tests to play an ‘important role’ in dealing with the health crisis.
A spokesman told the Daily Record: “We have no plans to end the universal offer of lateral flow tests.
“They remain an important part of the response to the Covid-19 pandemic by quickly detecting cases of the virus.
“They are crucial in helping to break the transmission chains by helping us identify people without symptoms but who can pass on the virus.”
The Telegraph reported today that some ministers are claiming that free trials are no longer required due to high vaccination rates across the UK.
It has also been argued that taxes may need to rise in order for the current test regime to continue.
Recent Scottish government data reveals that 84.8% of people aged 16 and over have received both doses of the coronavirus vaccine.
However, other Tory ministers have expressed concern about scrapping the universal tests due to the uncertainty of the autumn and winter months.
A Whitehall source, who is in favor of removing free tests, told the publication: “It agrees that universal access is not sustainable or necessary given the high levels of vaccination.
“We now have to decide what parameters need to be that reasonably qualify access to free testing.”
Today’s Covid statistics for Scotland revealed that 2,417 have tested positive for Covid over the last 24 hours.
Nearly 40,000 Scots were tested for Covid yesterday, of which 8.1% of them were confirmed to be infected with the virus.
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