Hipkins blindsided by Covid testing stations closure

Author
Newstalk ZB,
Publish Date
Tue, 20 Oct 2020, 2:28PM
Chris Hipkins. (Photo / NZ Herald)
Chris Hipkins. (Photo / NZ Herald)

Hipkins blindsided by Covid testing stations closure

Author
Newstalk ZB,
Publish Date
Tue, 20 Oct 2020, 2:28PM

Aucklanders are being reminded they still have access to Covid-19 testing in the weekends, even when the city's community testing centres are closed.

Auckland's six testing centres are closed in the weekend, leaving people needing a test to go via a GP, which could also be operating at reduced hours or closed.

Dr Ashley Bloomfield says at that point people should go to one of the region's 21 after hours clinics.

Auckland Regional Public Health Service's online list of those clinics shows only nine are available for testing in the weekend and of those only two offer around-the-clock testing.

However, Health Minister Chris Hipkins says he was blindsided by Covid-19 testing centres closing.

He says he'll be speaking with officials in the next few days.

Hipkins says there's clearly been a communication challenge that wasn't worked through well enough.

DHBs says under alert level one, community testing centres aren't required.