18:06 GMT23 November 2020
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    While the United Kingdom is capable of carrying out 200,000 tests on a daily basis, including 40,000 for NHS and care staff, only around 76,000 tests are being carried out per day.

    While British hospitals are still waiting for the authorities to clarify how regular testing should be carried out, Professor Derek Alderson, the president of the Royal College of Surgeons, has suggested that NHS staff should be tested twice a week to "regain public confidence".

    According to the professor, as tests can produce false negatives, it is essential to carry them out frequently in order to reassure patients that staff members aren't unwittingly carrying the virus.

    "It's absolutely essential to regain public confidence that we are able to test our staff regularly. [It would be] pragmatic [for testing to happen] about twice weekly", Mr Alderson stated.

    A similar view was expressed by Professor Nicola Stonehouse, a virologist at the University of Leeds, who told the BBC that it is "essential" to have multiple tests both due to their unreliability and because a patient could be "fine one day and infected the next".  

    The authorities came up with a pilot scheme across 11 hospitals to start testing staff working there more than a month ago, but Deputy Chief Executive of NHS Providers Saffron Cordery stated that she didn't know when the plan would come into force.

    As of 15 June, the UK was capable of carrying out 200,000 tests daily, including 40,000 for NHS and care staff; however, only 75,935 of those tests were being carried out.

    professor, National Health Service (NHS), test, coronavirus, COVID-19, U.K
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