Dan Jarvis, Mayor of the Sheffield City Region, said: “It’s unacceptable that people across South Yorkshire and nationally are unable to get a Coronavirus test. This was a national priority when the Government wanted to reach their target of 100,000 tests a day. But now, when they are urgently needed and the rate of cases are rising significantly across the North of England, the Government is failing in its duty to ensure sufficient tests are available.
“Medical professionals and those on the front line fighting this virus are correct – test and trace has descended into chaos. Every day we see Coronavirus cases rise, and now, large areas are being forced into lockdown and the Government appears unable to manage the situation. Now is the moment to act decisively, before we see more lives, jobs and businesses put at risk.
“Here in South Yorkshire, despite the unstinting work of our NHS and local authorities, the situation is precarious, with rates of infection rapidly heading in the wrong direction. I’m urging all our residents, young and old to exercise some Yorkshire grit and resilience and play their part in slowing the spread of this virus. If you have Coronavirus symptoms, then please try to get a test. If you are unable to get a test, then it is important that you isolate for a full 14 days to ensure that you do not spread the virus. It is vital we keep two metres apart, continue to wash our hands and wear face coverings on public transport and in shops.
“Without an effecting testing system and having clear, accurate data about where and how the virus is spread, we will sleepwalk into a deadly second COVID peak. It is the Government’s duty to do everything they can to keep the public safe. I’m pressing Ministers to get a grip and fix the broken testing system, before it is too late.”