A truck driver contacted the ABC claiming he was turned away from the COVID testing station at the Taree South Service Centre, the ABC reported on Tuesday, July 20.
The truck driver said he was told by a security guard at the service centre that they had run out of testing kits and had been waiting for more since Saturday.
The testing station at Taree is one of five "freight friendly" testing centres in NSW that is run by Transport for NSW.
"In recent days all five sites have seen an unprecedented increase in demand with the introduction of mandatory testing requirements for some freight workers in NSW, as well as the introduction of mandatory testing in Victoria, Queensland and South Australia," a spokesperson for Transport for NSW told the Manning River Times.
"Extreme demand for testing equipment more widely has also disrupted supply from the test kit manufacturers in some areas.
"Transport for NSW is working urgently to ensure the five testing sites are stocked to service the increased demand and will keep industry updated.
"Freight workers are advised to follow the advice on the VMS boards at each site.
"Freight drivers are able to use any COVID-19 testing centres to fulfil the requirements for mandatory testing with a number of centres now operating over extended hours," the spokesperson said. "To find the closest test site, visit www.nsw.gov.au/covid-19/health-and-wellbeing/clinics."
At a press conference on Tuesday, June 20 at Manning Base Hospital announcing the completion of the Lower Mid Coast Clinical Services Plan, Hunter New England Health District chief executive Michael DiRienzo said he was talking to Manning Base Hospital staff that afternoon to see if they could help out the testing centre at Taree South.
"We don't provide that service there, but I'm going to talk to management here about whether we can help them out.
"We'll go and send them some so they can keep testing. Being a testing site, we should have kits. We'll have a look at how many we have and we'll go help them out," he said.
"What we've got to do now is increase the capacity. Every time there is a potential exposure or there is some anxiety out there in the community, we want people to get tested. So what she should do now is assist our partners there in Transport (for NSW) to get some testing kits," he said.
Our journalists work hard to provide local, up-to-date news to the community. This is how you can access our trusted content:
- Bookmark our website
- Make sure you are signed up for our breaking and regular headlines newsletters
- Follow us on Twitter
- Follow us on Instagram
- Follow us on Google News