Belgian postal service Bpost has unveiled a pilot project for rapid tests in three sorting centres across the country, allowing workers to take a PCR test and find out the result fifteen minutes later.
For the time being, due to high figures, the centres in Brussels, Ghent and Charleroi will have access to the test, explained company spokesperson Veerle Van Mierlo.
The approximately 1,700 people who work there can therefore be tested twice a week for three to four weeks. The aim is to quickly identify infected people and only allow staff who have tested negative to work in the field.
Van Mierlo did not say how many tests have already been positive. “These rapid tests are part of a package of measures. We will continue to emphasise prevention,” she added.
“Rapid tests can be an additional tool to contain Covid-19 and ensure safer working conditions for workers. Other pilot projects will follow,” said the office of Public Enterprises Minister Petra De Sutter.
The government says that 40% of infections currently occur at the workplace, which is why the government is pushing for teleworking. “But some people cannot work from home. So this project is very important,” the minister said.
The results of the experiment will contribute to the development of an appropriate strategy for rapid testing and self-testing in Belgium.