Schools: Coronavirus

Department of Health and Social Care written question – answered on 12th April 2021.

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Photo of Mark Harper Mark Harper Conservative, Forest of Dean

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what the evidential basis is for the policy that (a) a positive covid-19 lateral flow test taken on a test site in a school or college does not require a PCR confirmation and (b) where a PCR confirmation test is taken and is negative that test is not able to override the positive lateral flow test result.

Photo of Helen Whately Helen Whately Minister of State (Department of Health and Social Care)

From the 30 March, a negative NHS Test and Trace administered confirmatory polymerase chain reaction test taken within two days of the initial, positive lateral flow device (LFD) test removes the legal duty to self-isolate. LFDs continue to have a very high specificity – the latest analysis shows lateral flow tests have a specificity of at least 99.9%. This means that for every 1,000 lateral flow tests there is fewer than one false positive.

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