Christopher Whiteside MBE is Conservative County Councillor for the Egremont North and St Bees Division of Cumbria County Council. The division includes St Bees, Bigrigg, Wood End, Moor Row, part of the Mirehouse area of Whitehaven, and surrounding countryside.
He is also deputy chair (political and campaigning) of the North-West region of the voluntary wing of the Conservative party.
Chris lives and works in Copeland with his wife and family.
Tuesday, November 10, 2020
The government has announced the rollout of 600,000 rapid-turnaround tests across England, so that the NHS can detect this virus quicker than ever before – even in people who don’t have symptoms – and mass testing will be a vital tool in defeating coronavirus.
Last week, the government launched a pilot of mass testing in Liverpool. This pilot includes testing through an innovative new technology that can provide results within an hour without needing to be processed in a lab.
The government has now announced that 600,000 more of these rapid-turnaround tests will be sent out by NHS Test and Trace to local public health leaders this week in over 50 areas. Each area will receive an initial batch of 10,000 tests as part of a new pilot to enable them to start testing priority and high-risk groups.
Proactively testing asymptomatic individuals will help identify those who unknowingly have the virus and enable those who test positive and their contacts to self-isolate, which can help drive down the R rate locally and save lives.