YORK Hospital currently only has a limited capacity to test nurses, doctors and other front-line health workers for coronavirus.

An email from York Teaching Hospital Trust’s medical director James Taylor to staff last week, seen by The Press, says “there are significant delays due to capacity issues which we expect to get worse if no new capacity is developed”.

A spokesperson for the hospital trust said: “We do have some capacity for testing staff, and that is being used to test symptomatic family members of front-line staff who are having to self-isolate for 14 days.

“This is so that the staff member can return to work if the test result is negative.

“The current national guidance is that anyone who has symptoms should stay at home and self-isolate.

“This includes NHS staff.

“We are testing people who are admitted to hospital and who are suspected of having COVID-19, in line with national guidance.”

The Government confirmed this afternoon, Friday, that tests will be made available for front-line NHS staff.

NHS chief executive Sir Simon Stevens said NHS staff would start being tested for coronavirus from next week, including critical care nurses, intensive care staff, ambulance workers and GPs.