COVID19 Response 26th March 2020
Like all other businesses we currently find ourselves in strange and uncharted territory. In light of the national emergency situation and current Government guidance we are restricting staff attending our workplace to essential employees who cannot work from home. We are also altering our work patterns to limit the number of people in our laboratories at any one time. This is absolutely essential for the protection of our staff, their families and the wider community.
As a result of this our services are currently being prioritised to statutory food safety testing and testing for animal health and welfare. We will continue to book in any other samples we receive and these will be stored securely for future testing as soon as it is safe and practical for us to do so.
What this means for you:
- Statutory food safety testing will continue as normal. We have also made contingency arrangements with other laboratories to ensure that this testing can continue in the event of significant staff absence at our sites.
- Diagnostic work and statutory disease testing will continue as far as possible for farm animals and companion animals. If we are faced with severe staff shortages due to self-isolation or sickness testing frequency may be reduced so you may see an increase in turnaround times. We cannot guarantee sample receipt to result turnaround times at present.
- Health scheme testing will be performed if we have the staff resource to do so as we consider maintaining the health of the national herd and flock essential. Testing frequency will be reduced and turnaround times will be affected. Where possible we will still perform testing to allow animal movements for urgent food chain or welfare reasons. We cannot guarantee sample receipt to result turnaround times at present.
- All discretionary testing, such as rabies serology and equine testing prior to breeding is considered low priority at the moment and will only be performed if we have staff resource to do so. Testing frequency and turnaround times are likely to be severely affected over the next few weeks.
- We will have admin and veterinary staff available to answer queries during normal working hours. In order to make it easier for us to prioritise responses and assign your query to the most appropriate member of staff we would ask that, where possible, you use e-mail rather than phone to make enquiries.
The situation is changing on a daily basis and we will provide service level updates on our website and social media channels as the situation continues to evolve.
We wish all our customers well and look forward to the resumption of normal service as soon as this is possible.
Paul Burr BSc(VetSci)Hons BVM&S PhD MRCVS