Sheffield cancer patient 'frustrated' by long delays to coronavirus test results

A Sheffield man who has been diagnosed with cancer was left anxiously waiting for a week for the results of his coronavirus test, and had to ring up to eventually get them.

Sunday, 21st June 2020, 9:29 am
Updated Sunday, 21st June 2020, 11:24 am

Kevin Walters, 59, of Chapeltown, who has been shielding during the pandemic due to his condition, said that the same long waits have been endured by his sister and also some friends.

At the beginning of the month Prime Minister Boris Johnson said that 90 per cent of tests were being completed within 48 hours and promised that all tests results would be returned to people within 24 hours by the end of June.

Mr Walters, who works in IT, said: “When will the Government be challenged on their consistent lies about the 24 – 48 hour return of results? It is just not true.

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Kevin Walters, who has cancer, waited seven days for his coronavirus test results.

“I am part of a research group and they asked us all to take a test, and I agreed because the more people that are tested the better.

“I requested my kit, did the test last Thursday (June 11) and sent it back by courier to Kings College London on the Friday. A week later and I had still had no result.

“My sister and some friends had also been tested as part of different research groups, so I called them and asked if it had taken this long for them. My sister still did not have hers and my friend said it took theirs five or six days to arrive.

“I have metastatic cancer – there is no cure. So I was frustrated and anxious, sat at home worrying ‘have I or haven’t I?’

“I did some googling and rang 119 (coronavirus number) and asked about my results.

“Twenty minutes after I made that call I got a text with my results back. If they could find my results that quickly when I rang up and asked them why had they not sent them to me?”

A Department of Health and Social Care spokesperson said: “Over 7 million people have now been tested in the UK and the vast majority report no issues with the process, with 90% of mobile and regional results being returned in less than 48 hours.”