A NEW drive-through testing service for NHS staff will open in York within the next two weeks, MP Julian Sturdy says.

Following a telephone meeting with the Vale of York NHS Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG), York Outer MP Mr Sturdy has announced that the drive-through testing centre will open on the outskirts of the city. The exact location has not yet been confirmed, he said.

He believes this will be in addition to a testing facility for NHS workers which is already operational at Easingwold.

Mr Sturdy held the meeting with the leadership of the CCG last Friday to receive an update on how local NHS primary care services are coping with the outbreak, and to check what he could do to assist.

He was updated on a range of matters, including the supply of personal protective equipment (PPE) to GP surgeries and other healthcare settings, as well as the expansion of Covid-19 testing facilities for the city’s NHS staff.

Mr Sturdy said: “It was useful to hear directly from York’s primary care NHS services, and I am reassured by the impressive efforts our local health service is making.

"I updated them on the feedback I have been receiving from York residents and frontline local NHS workers, and will continue to pass on the suggestions of our local NHS leadership to central government, so national policy is responding effectively to the situation on the ground.

"I want to pay a warm tribute to the ongoing amazing efforts of all York’s health and care workers, to whom we all owe so much. I hope this week’s opening of the new 500-bed ‘Nightingale’ special coronavirus hospital in Harrogate, built from scratch this month, gives local residents some reassurance that extraordinary measures are being taken to ensure our local health service has the capacity to absorb the strain of the virus.

"I am continuing to assist constituents with all aspects of the outbreak, and encourage residents to contact me if I can be of any help whatsoever.”