MINISTERS have admitted they face missing Matt Hancock’s coronavirus testing target today.
The Health Secretary pledged on April 2 that 100,000 checks a day would be carried out by the end of the month following criticism the UK was lagging behind countries such as South Korea and Germany,
But while daily capacity is now over 70,000 the number of actual tests is still running at less than half the target.
This morning, Justice Secretary Robert Buckland admitted the aim was ‘probably’ going to be missed, attributing the failure to fact the government started from a ‘low base’.
He said he now hoped the figures would reach the mark in the next few days.
NHS Providers, which represents health service trusts, has launched a blistering attack on Hancock’s handling of the situation, saying the push to hit the number has been a ‘distraction’ and led to chaotic expansion.
In a report, it said the English health and care system ‘started from a poor position’ as the pandemic tightened its grip on Europe, and lacked a clear, effective and well communicated strategy.