23 NOVEMBER 2020
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American Airlines and British Airways have launched an optional coronavirus medical-based testing trial on select flights from cities in the United States to Heathrow Airport (LHR).
The free tests will initially be offered to eligible customers booked on designated services from Dallas Fort Worth, New York JFK (both AA) and Los Angeles with BA. The programme starts Wednesday 25 November.
Eligible customers booked on flights that are part of the trial will be contacted by the airlines with instructions on how to volunteer. Each customer participating in the trial will take three tests in conjunction with the journey. If a customer tests positive, they should reschedule or cancel their travel.
The first test, to be taken 72 hours before departure from the US, is a convenient at-home RT-PCR test provided by LetsGetChecked, a Dublin-based medical support company first established in 2014. Customers will self-collect a nasal sample, under the supervision of medical professionals via a virtual visit.
After landing at LHR, participating customers will proceed to their second test at the airport. The LAMP test, provided by Collinson, involves the collection of a nasal sample by a medical professional. After the test is completed, a test kit for the third test will be provided to the customer. The third test kit offers an at-home testing option through the self-collection of a saliva sample which is taken three days after arrival into the United Kingdom.
Based on current UK Government policies, international travellers arriving in the UK from the US are required to self-isolate for 14 days even if they have tested negative for Covid-19. The tests being used as part of the trial will not impact UK National Health Service testing capacity.
The joint trial will offer free tests to passengers who choose to participate in the programme.
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