Gatwick Airport is to be partially utilised as a drive-through testing centre for coronavirus cases in the UK.
Initially for use by NHS staff and invited key workers, the site will open on today and be available between 09:00-17:00 daily, on an appointment-only basis.
Stewart Wingate, chief executive, Gatwick Airport, said: “We are pleased to support the national effort against the spread of the coronavirus by allowing Gatwick facilities to be used as a vital testing centre for frontline health workers.
“We have the space available at Gatwick to be able to host such a large-scale operation.
“Alongside keeping the airport open to support repatriation flights, amongst others, we are happy to be able to support the NHS, Government and the country in whatever way we can.”
The airport is currently operating out of a single terminal following a sharp fall in demand in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic.
Health minister, Lord Bethell, said: “The government is rapidly scaling up the national effort to boost testing capacity for coronavirus to protect the vulnerable, support our NHS, and ultimately save lives.
“This new service will help end the uncertainty of whether NHS and social care staff need to stay at home meaning those who test negative will be able to return to work.
“This is a national effort and we are proud to be working with a number of partners to turn this ambition into a reality and roll out additional capacity to where it is needed.”
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