The struggle to book PCR tests on the HSE website has been subject to immense criticism in recent days, and local readers have got in touch with the ’People to vent their frustration.
One reader says the website crashed on two separate nights they attempted to book a test.
“I’m currently in self-isolation after a positive antigen test and my employer is asking me to produce PCR results.”
“Not being able to get a test slot is beginning to cause tension with management in my workplace,” they added.
For family units that are testing positive on antigen tests, difficulty booking PCR tests is multiplied.
Another reader explained how they were forced to prioritise members of their family when booking PCR tests due to the lack of availability.
“If PCR tests are at a premium then something like a waiting list system should apply rather than a nightly free-for-all,” they said.
“These are vital tests at the end of the day and they are being treated like concert tickets.”
The HSE has since altered the criteria required to necessitate a PCR test.
If you are aged four to 39 and you have symptoms of Covid-19, you are instead advised to book antigen tests online with the HSE.
If you are a close contact of someone who tested positive for Covid-19, you will get a text message from the HSE with a link to get tested.
If you have symptoms, you should get a PCR test.
If you do not have symptoms, the HSE will provide you with antigen tests.
PCR tests are still advised for healthcare workers, people over 39 with Covid-19 symptoms, people booking for a child under four with Covid-19 symptoms and people who have tested positive on an antigen test.
View fully updated criteria and check applicability for a PCR or free antigen test on the HSE website HERE.
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