King's Health Partners and Testing Alliance offer new COVID-19 test capacity

King’s Health Partners have united with London’s leading life science and academic institutions to respond in an unprecedented way to the coronavirus pandemic by ramping up diagnostic testing capacity for the UK.

COVID-19 research newsAs part of The Testing Alliance, set up by life science cluster MedCity, world-leading universities, healthcare institutes, industry and pathology service providers have combined expertise to respond to COVID-19. They will use untapped resources and build on existing infrastructure to offer at least 20,500 more tests a day for COVID-19 by March 2021.

Through the Alliance, King’s Health Partners, Health Service Laboratories in partnership with UCL, Imperial College London and Queen Mary University of London will use existing university and hospital laboratories and launch new testing sites to deliver large-scale diagnostic capabilities. London universities are also involved in the development and manufacture of a potential vaccine.

Jill Lockett, Managing Director of King’s Health Partners, said:

Offering our local and national population the safety, protection and peace of mind that COVID-19 testing provides is our priority during this pandemic. We have some of the world’s best life sciences facilities in London and together with our partner Academic Health Sciences Centres and MedCity we are committed to harnessing our combined expertise to support capacity, build knowledge and increase understanding. King’s Health Partners, University College London, Imperial College London and Queen Mary University of London are delighted to be launching new laboratory capacity for an additional 143,500 tests a week, and we welcome the support from the Department of Health and Social Care to do this.

 Neelam Patel, Chief Executive of MedCity, said:

We work to create powerful scientific networks and we’re proud that the latest collaboration we’ve brought together will help expand capacity for COVID-19 testing in the UK. 
By bringing together King’s Health Partners, University College London, Imperial College London and Queen Mary University of London, we mobilised London’s world-leading institutions to refocus their space, equipment and people on this most pressing and unprecedented healthcare need.

An ambitious logistical effort will now begin so that the alliance labs can get ready to process samples from across the UK starting from November and reaching immediate additional capacity of 20,500 samples a day by March 2021.

MedCity is part-funded by the Mayor of London. Other partners supporting the Alliance’s efforts include: the Greater London Authority, NHS, Public Health England, the multi-agency Regional Strategic Testing Group, and the Department for Health and Social Care (DHSC).