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Care home testing programme welcomed

A local MLA has welcomed Health Minister Robin Swann's decision.

Care home testing programme welcomed

A local MLA has welcomed an NI Executive commitment on a rolling testing programme for Northern Ireland’s care homes.

The programme will involve regular testing for all residents and staff in homes without a confirmed outbreak of the Covid-19 virus.

Staff will be tested on a fortnightly basis with residents tested once a month, beginning on Monday, August 3.

Health Minister, Robin Swann, said protecting residents and staff was vital.

“With the threat from Covid-19 still present, we must continue to do all we can to support care homes. That means protecting residents and staff,” he said.

“I want to again pay tribute to care home staff for all the work they have done during this pandemic.

“I also want to reiterate my commitment to building a better future for the social care sector, through reform and investment.”

Mid Ulster MLA, Emma Sheerin, welcomed the commitment from the Minister on testing.

“I had written a question to Minister Swann back in May asking what his plans were around testing of care homes, and whether 'rolling testing' was under consideration,” she said.

“Following concerns from several constituents with loved ones in care homes, I know that the fear of Coronavirus, in particular amongst the elderly community, is still very real.

'The minister's proposal will go some way to alleviate worries and to ensure families that a keen eye is still keeping watch on the situation.”

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