Bad news for anyone seeking a PCR test.
While urging people to get a PCR test if they are symptomatic is a current cornerstone of Ireland’s attempts to bring Covid cases under control, there are currently no available PCR test appointments in the entirety of cork.
Cork, the second largest population centre in Ireland, has five PCR test centres — The Lee Covid Screening Centre, Cork Airport, St. Stephen’s Hospital, the South Douglas Road, and Randal Óg GAA Club in Dunmanway — but as Thursday morning, all are completely booked up for the second day running. The HSE website currently advises those seeking such a test to “check back later.”
There are currently no walk-in testing centres in operation.
In order to get a PCR test through the HSE, the best bet for anyone based in Cork is to try to get an appointment at either Shannon Airport, or Tralee.
The absence of PCR tests comes just days after Minister for Health Stephen Donnelly ignited controversy by tweeting a graphic which read “Do not use an antigen test” in large block capitals. The government’s current advice is that antigen tests are solely for people who are asymptomatic, while anyone showing symptoms should get a PCR test. Which, as above, is not currently possible in Cork.
🚨Antigen tests should only be used by those who are asymptomatic
🚨If you have symptoms of COVID-19, do not use an antigen test. Self-isolate and get a PCR test. pic.twitter.com/TXmrejV6Nr
— Stephen Donnelly (@DonnellyStephen) November 23, 2021