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Rapid testing in nursing homes recommendation requires timely deployment

Thursday April 1, 2021

1st April 2021: NHI welcomes Report of the COVID-19 Rapid Testing Group and its recommendation regarding the deployment of rapid testing for nursing homes. Tadhg Daly, NHI CEO states: “NHI has long been advancing utilisation of antigen testing should be encompassed within the suite of measures promoted by public health to protect nursing home residents and staff from Covid19. We believe rapid antigen testing has an important role to fulfil in supporting the ongoing infection prevention control measures in the context of visitation that can be implemented by nursing homes during this precarious time. The Report points to deployment of rapid testing to support residential care homes in the UK and Germany, with Public Health England informing of 2,000 to 3,000 positive cases being detected through the deployment of the technology within care homes. Arising from this recommendation, NHI engagement with the Department of Health will be prioritised to discuss the prospective rollout of antigen testing within nursing homes, as per the recommendation. We recognise it presents a planning and logistical undertaking but it is a measure that requires timely deployment in the context of the concerns at the levels of community transmission.”

Tadhg Daly, NHI CEO is available for further comment. Media interviews will be facilitated by Michael McGlynn, NHI Communications & Research Executive, who can be contacted at 087 9082970.