This is a huge story. One source tells me that Roche supplies 1 in 5 labs in the UK. The implications of shortages are terrifying…
The focus will be on coronavirus, but this goes far far beyond that. Roche supplies everything from cancer tests to home monitoring systems for patients with heart conditions

At a moment when the NHS is under intense pressure, this will only intensify it
What's the issue? Roche is building new automated warehouse to increase capacity ahead of Brexit

The new warehouse isn’t working, but they haven’t got a backup warehouse - and most labs don't hold their own stock. It's a just-in-time nightmare
Roche has apologised and says it is doing everything possible - extending working hours, recruiting extra staff - to return to routine operations

But in a letter to customers it says "the disruption you are currently experiencing may not be resolved for 2-3 weeks"
As @ashishskynews was just saying on Sky News, even 2-3 week shortages mean that there will have to be agonisingly tough decisions made about prioritisation of resources, just when coronavirus has already forced so many of those decisions upon the NHS
@ashishskynews Roche says covid-19 testing will be impacted, but that it will prioritise the supply of PCR and antibody tests to the NHS.

Full details here - and much more to come over the next few days, I'm sure…

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More from @rowlsmanthorpe

6 Oct
The final part of the PM's speech, where he cast forward to 2023, was fascinating. Digital IDs, electric vehicles, super-fast broadband... to enable a life of family and quiet local living

A vision of techno-Conservatism?
Found the bit. He painted a vision of technological transformation, then said it would allow young people in their 20s and 30s to "bring up children in the neighbourhoods where they grew up themselves...
"...and instead of being dragged on big commutes to the city they can start a business in their home town"

This will - I imagine - be appealing to many. But can the UK pivot away from its model in the teeth of a pandemic? And what does this mean for struggling city centres?
Read 5 tweets
4 Oct
NEW: Public Health England has found 15,841 positive cases that weren't registered on its data system

As a result, 22,961 have been reported today for England

The graph of cases now looks like this 📈
What on earth happened? We still don't know. But *something* went wrong with the computer system on 24 September

This chart showing the build-up of missing cases was sent out to directors of public health in the north-west earlier today
The note sent to directors of public health explains what this means in practical terms.

They've been told:

1. This issue does not affect anyone's results. Everyone who tested positive was informed "in the normal way" and asked to self-isolate
Read 7 tweets
2 Oct
The Northumbria University outbreak gives a fresh perspective to the SAGE minutes from 1 September, which were released today

SAGE identified numerous risks with opening colleges and universities, warning that it "has the potential to drive outbreaks"

You don't say
The SAGE minutes pose the question every student must be asking: now they're at uni, how will they ever leave?

SAGE says the risks of national transmission from universities will peak when students go home for Christmas - and that managing it will need “national oversight”
Read 4 tweets
30 Sep
NEW: The contact tracing app is sending notifications telling people they've been near someone with covid-19

They haven't. These are "default messages" from Google & Apple

I spoke to scared and confused users - including one who'd wrongly self-isolated…
The notification says: "someone you were near reported having COVID-19"

So naturally, people think they've... been near someone with COVID-19

The only way to find out they haven't is via an obscure post on the NHS website…
These false alarms are causing a good deal of confusion, so here is a public health announcement

If you need to self-isolate, the app will tell you. The alert in the app will look like this

Anything else, just ignore it Image
Read 10 tweets
28 Sep
From today, it is illegal not to isolate if you've been asked to by Test and Trace. Fines go up to £10,000

I've got hold of the document - marked OFFICIAL SENSITIVE - with the changes to contact tracers' scripts
Change 1: contact tracers will have to ask for people's addresses
Change 2: they will have to stress the change to the law
Read 8 tweets
27 Sep
The covid situation in universities is getting a lot of attention, for understandable reasons. All the same it's worth bearing in mind the latest data, which shows clusters coming overwhelmingly in schools
A Test and Trace source says the speed of spread in schools came as a surprise

"Schools have been a disaster. The amount of calls, volume of cases. Within only days of schools going back... It swamped health protection and risked other stuff being missed"
This might well be the future for universities and obviously there are complicating circumstances. (Did they need to go back at all?) But there are a lot more students in school than university and the spread is happening there right now
Read 5 tweets

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