Lifting of Covid-19 Restrictions – Delivery And Collection Of Test Kits

Lifting of Covid-19 Restrictions – Delivery And Collection Of Test Kits

As you will be aware the Government announced on the 19th January 2022 that restrictions in relation to the Covid-19 pandemic are being lifted.  The detail was communicated to Branches in LTB 031/22.

In addition to the above the Government has announced that provision of free Lateral Flow Tests and PCR tests will also be removed from 1st April 2022, with the exception of at risks groups (details to be announced in March 2022), Health Care Workers and NHS staff.  This applies to England only, the other devolved Nations have yet to confirm their intentions in relation to the provision of testing going forward.

Covid-19 test kits have of course been treated as an operational priority during the pandemic and the exceptional contribution that has been made by our members has been an integral part of the Government’s response to COVID-19 and central to the national effort to combat the coronavirus. The Prime Minister has thanked the Royal Mail workforce and the thanks of Royal Mail Group HQ and CWU HQ goes out to each and every member also.

Royal Mail is currently in discussions with the UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA) on the future of testing and the test kits programme across the UK.  In the meantime, the removal of free testing will see an expected reduction in numbers of kits but it is still vitally important that COVID-19 test kits continue to be treated as an absolute priority within the Royal Mail operation. 

Royal Mail is currently in discussions with the UK’s Health Security Agency (UKHSA) on the future of testing and the test kits programme across the UK and until the future of the service is finalised it is vital that the COVID-19 test kits programme continues to be treated as an absolute priority through the Royal Mail network as we see the expected reduction in numbers. 

Royal Mail have therefore issued the attached communication to update on the current position and to emphasise the importance of the adherence to the Standard Operating Procedures, to ensure that exceptional service standards continues to be delivered.  

The communication confirms the following: 

Mail Centres:

  • Keep test kits separate from all other mail items
  • If you receive any test kits for delivery for another plant out of course from Paragon, immediately call CPC and scan every kit as a mis-sort
  • Process PCR test kits in discrete, manual work areas DO NOT PROCESSon the PSM as these are for UK citizens due elective surgery or critically extremely vulnerable (LFDs can be processed through PSMs until Thursday 31 March)
  • Ensure the correct scans are applied to all test kits
  • Label test kits returns with the correct colour corresponding York labels 
    • Red = elective care kits
    • Lilac = standard kits
    • Yellow = IEP kits
  • Check the Redlands and QCC systems for potential quality defects.

Delivery Offices:

  • Ensure every test kit is attempted delivery, especially PCRs in lilac and red poly bags which are for elective care and clinically vulnerable people
  • Ensure the correct scans are applied to all test kits
  • Check the Redlands and QCC systems for potential quality defects.

Further information will be communicated as it becomes available.

Yours sincerely

Davie Robertson                                          Mark Baulch Assistant Secretary                                     Assistant Secretary 

Dave Joyce
National Health, Safety & Environment Officer

Attachment – Delivery And Collection Of Test Kits

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