Demand for RATs exceeding supply

Some Hawke’s Bay collection sites for Rapid Antigen Tests (RATs) had to close early on Sunday after demand outstripped supply.

Hawke’s Bay DHB COVID-19 Senior Responsible Officer Chris McKenna said 126,000 RAT kits were distributed to collection sites on Friday, but by Sunday afternoon, 6 March, the supply had run out with many sites having to close early.

“We expected 126,000 kits to get us through the weekend, but demand has simply outstripped supply at many collection sites,” said Mrs McKenna.

“Delivery of an additional 24,000 RAT kits were due to arrive last week but were held up with arrival expected tomorrow (Monday 7 March).  An additional 126,000 RAT kits are also due to arrive on Tuesday.”

Mrs Mckenna said anyone with COVID-19 symptoms and needing a test tomorrow, 7 March, should visit a drive-in testing centre to help reduce demand at collection sites.

“Drive-in testing centres still have RAT supplies which we expect will get us through until stocks are replenished.

“People can also keep an eye on the Healthpoint website to find out what collection sites are open and have RATs available for pre-order, but supplies will be limited.

“Providers and the DHB are working incredibly hard to meet demand but are reliant on the delivery of RAT supplies, so we thank people for their understanding as we work through these teething problems together.”

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