(Source: BBC News)
The government says it has hit its target of being able to carry out 500,000 coronavirus tests a day across the UK by the end of October.
The data for 31 October showed just over 525,000 tests could be done - a doubling of capacity in two months. However, just under 300,000 tests were actually carried out.
Officials said the labs did not work at full capacity as there needed to be flexibility to cope with demand surges or staffing and equipment problems. The target was set by ministers in early summer as part of the expansion of the Test and Trace system.
By mid-June labs had the capacity to carry out 200,000 tests a day, but during the rest of the summer capacity increased more slowly. When schools went back after the summer, the labs struggled to cope with demand, leading to the rationing of tests and delays processing tests.
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