By Bev Fearis, published 2/09/20
Heathrow staff have taken part in trials of three rapid point of care Covid testing methods as part of the airport’s efforts to restart flying.
The findings will be shared with the UK Government as ministers consider how testing could provide a safe alternative to blanket quarantine for ‘high risk’ destinations.
The tests are in addition to a Terminal 2 centre unveiled last month in partnership with Swissport and Collinson for a PCR testing-on-arrival pilot, which is subject to Government approval.
Heathrow CEO John Holland-Kaye said: “Testing is the lifeline that the UK’s aviation sector needs to get back on its feet. We’ve put some of the most cutting-edge rapid-testing technologies into action at Heathrow to see which offers the best solution. If we can find a test that is accurate, gets a result within a matter of minutes, is cost-effective and gets the Government green light, we could have the potential to introduce wide-scale testing at the airport.
“Every passenger travelling through Heathrow would have the confidence to know the airport is Covid-free, boosting demand and getting Global Britain back to safely trading and travelling with the world again. Without this, our first-class aviation sector risks becoming second class, giving Britain’s competitive advantage to others.”