Coronavirus: GPs denounce lack of gear for large-scale testing
Share article:
Share article:

Coronavirus: GPs denounce lack of gear for large-scale testing

© Belga

General practitioners have not received adequate equipment to test patients for the new coronavirus (Covid-19), an association of doctors unions said Monday.

“I can only regret the fact that general practitioners are receiving no help,” the honorary director of the Abysm doctors union, Marc Moens, said.

Ahead of the entry into the first phase of Belgium’s deconfinement, GPs received the green light from the government to begin screening patients for Covid-19 as of Monday 4 May.

Related News:


But Moens, who on 30 April had already said that GPs had not received equipment and were like “soldiers being sent into battle without arms or ammunition,” said that testing swabs and other gear were still nowhere to be seen.

“Triage [testing] centres are well-stocked, swabs and protective equipment arrived in sufficient quantities, but general doctors have not been delivered them,” Moens said, Le Vif reports.

Moens said that doctors can only carry out tests if they have received the appropriate swabs from laboratories, and added that doctors were having to equip themselves with protective equipment like visors or medical gowns.

The enlargement of testing capacities in Belgium comes as authorities plough on towards the three dates earmarked for the progressive deconfinement: 4, 11 and 18 May.

Additionally, the enlargement in numbers also comes as the previously stringent criteria to be eligible for a Covid-19 test was also enlarged from 4 May.

The informatics system to centralise the screening information between regions is also not convenient for the scale of testing Belgium was aiming for, Moens said.

The Brussels Times

Latest news

European Parliament wants to sue the Commission for delaying rule of law conditionality
In a rare move on Thursday, the Legal Affairs Committee of the European Parliament voted for the Parliament to take the European Commission to court ...
Mayor wants to close two Brussels bars where alleged sexual assaults took place
Ixelles' Mayor Christos Doulkeridis (Ecolo) said that he’d like to close the two bars that employed a man accused of raping multiple patrons, ...
‘Untenable’: Mayor says situation at Brussels North station is out of control
The situation at Brussels North Station is no longer tenable, Schaerbeek's mayor Cécile Jodogne (Défi) says. Drug dealing, homelessness, ...
Suicide second-leading cause of death among European youth
Suicide is the number two killer among young people living in Europe, a recent Unicef report on the state of their mental health found. The ...
‘Too little, too late’: Brussels mayors criticise CST implementation
After a two week delay, the Covid Safe Ticket (CST) will become mandatory in several situations in Brussels from today (Friday). Some mayors blame a ...
Sciensano expert warns of rising Covid-19 cases this winter
The return of colder weather and the relaxing of health measures are giving rise to new Covid-19 contaminations and hospitalisations around Belgium, ...
Hospital food is making you sick, Belgian study shows
Eating hospital meals results in a measurable decline in health, according to a report from the Flemish television network VTM, which paints a ...
Belgium in Brief: Supply Issues
There are few things more jarring than walking into a store and finding that the shelves are empty, be that partially or otherwise. One thing ...
Stolen Magritte painting on display for first time in ten years
Surrealist painter René Magritte's work "Olympia", which made headlines across the world when it was stolen from a museum in Belgium in 2009, will be ...
Brussels airport pilots ’15 minute’ PCR test
Brussels Airport has announced that it will soon begin a trial of an ultra-fast PCR test able to detect Covid-19 in 15 minutes, a far faster ...
Over 1,000 demonstrators march in Brussels following sexual assault allegations
Around 1,300 people gathered in Ixelles on Thursday night to march against sexual violence, according to reporting from Bruzz. The march was ...
Covid Safe Ticket mandatory in Brussels, but no fines yet
The Brussels-Capital Region will expand the use of the Covid Safe Ticket (CST) from today (Friday), but it will take a few days before rule-breakers ...