The Cleaning & Hygiene Suppliers Association (CHSA) is requesting that employees of manufacturers and distributors of cleaning and hygiene products be eligible for priority testing for the coronavirus.
In his letter to Secretary of State for Health Matt Hancock, CHSA chairman Lorcan Mekitarian argues that there is a need to ensure the safety of workers in this sector to ensure the supply of these goods remains uncompromised.
Anyone over the age of five who exhibits symptoms of COVID-19 – a temperature, cough and the loss of the sense of taste and smell – is now able to secure a test for coronavirus. Essential workers in England, Scotland and Northern Ireland can apply for priority testing through GOV.uk. These tests are prioritised over those made available to the wider public through the NHS.
In the CHSA letter, Mekitarian, explains that workers in the cleaning product sector “produce, pack and distribute the products being used by cleaning operatives working in hospitals, care homes, schools and other essential locations, including offices being prepared to get the economy moving again.
“The products include essential items such as clinical waste sacks, gowns, aprons, gloves, masks, hard surface sanitisers and hand sanitisers, non-woven wipes, tissue and other related products.
“Without priority testing, manufacturers and distributors may be affected by employees unknowingly infecting colleagues. The consequence could be an impact on the ability of the companies to manufacture and distribute the essential products.”