Patients must have two major symptoms to qualify for a Covid-19 tests from now on.
People must have a fever and either a cough or shortness of breath.
They also need to be either contacts of a confirmed case, healthcare staff or in a vulnerable group.
It means that thousands of people waiting to be tested who don’t have an appointment yet won’t be tested and will have to call their GP again.
Chief medical officer Tony Holohan says not everyone with cold like symptoms will be recommended for testing “It’s to focus the testing more on a smaller number of symptoms, in particular include fever and some other systems like cough and respiratory systems and we’ve set that out”.
“It’s that we’ve a more focused case definition that GPs will work with to identity patients and perhaps then not every person with cold like symptoms be recommended for testing because they don’t have a fever”.