Over £7million spent on lateral flow tests so far

Tuesday 19th July 2022 5:37 am
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Deputy editor Andy Dalrymple tries out an LFT for himself last summer, when the experience was relatively novel (Isle of Man Newspapers )

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The total costs for lateral flow tests in the Isle of Man so far in the pandemic is £7,176,594 (excluding VAT).

This includes distribution and carriage costs.

A little over a year ago, in the Examiner which hit shelves on June 22, 2021, we had our deputy editor Andy Dalrymple test out the DIY tests.

A relatively unknown entity here on the island, they were already widely in use across the sea in the UK.

Now, LFTs have become an almost everyday occurance for many of us, with negative tests required for many experiences over the past year.

Although the requirement for a negative test result has been dropped for most activities now, not too long ago, they were required to travel off island, enter many establishments and attend events such as concerts and other entertainment venues.

In June 2021, when we first reported on their use, LFTs were part of a ‘voluntary pilot scheme for Covid-19’.

The scheme saw students and school staff on the island given the opportunity to collect up to two lateral flow tests per week to take home and carry out.

At that point, their use had already been widely encouraged across the UK, where packs of seven tests were freely available for anyone who requested one.

They had been used in schools in the UK since March 2021.

Costs for LFTs up to March 31, 2022 were included in a Freedom of Information request submitted at the end of April.

These costs were collated from Manx Care, the Cabinet Office and the Department of Infrastructure.

This amounted to £6,068,579 excluding VAT.

All LFD costs from April 1 to date are now just incurred by Manx Care.

The new figure of £7,176,594 was provided to the Examiner on Thursday, July 7.

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