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HSE need to rethink sending Covid-19 samples to German lab – Fitzmaurice

Sending Irish Covid-19 tests to a German laboratory when we have the opportunity to process them domestically is a disgrace, according to independent TD Michael Fitzmaurice.

Speaking on the matter, he said: “The acting Government and the HSE continues to send in excess of 1,000 Covid-19 test samples a day to a German lab for processing, despite some Irish companies indicating that they have the capacity to carry out the work.

“It is a disgrace to think we are needlessly outsourcing work in this country at a time when our economy is at a standstill as a result of the virus.

“I have been in touch with one of these companies who has been left frustrated by the HSE’s lack of engagement on this matter.

“A lab based in Germany was enlisted by the HSE to help in clearing the backlog of tests in recent months, a task which has now been completed.

“The number of tests which have been sent to Germany from Ireland goes into tens of thousands in recent weeks, with the Irish Air Corps completing trips this month.

“As it stands, over 25 labs in Ireland are involved in the processing of Covid-19 test samples – with testing capacity said to be in the region of 10,000 samples per day at present.

“During these uncertain times, this Government must look to every opportunity possible to retain jobs and support businesses in this country.

“It is beggar’s belief then we are continuing to send samples to Germany, when that work could sustain people here.

“If a company has the necessary resources and the required accreditation to carry out this testing, then we should be looking to reduce the need for outsourcing any of this work.

“Someone needs to step up to the plate and take charge of this situation,” Fitzmaurice concluded.

Michael Fitzmaurice TD 086-1914565