Britain has admitted it sent thousands of samples to the US for coronavirus testing due to “operational issues”.
A spokeswoman for the British Department of Health made the admission in an interview with Sky News on Sunday.
She was reacting to a report by The Sunday Telegraph.
The report said about 50,000 test samples were delivered on chartered flights to the US.
The spokeswoman said that the decision was in sync with the “contingencies” to grapple with testing-related “problems”.
She added that “the expansion of the UK’s coronavirus testing network has involved setting up an entirely new ‘Lighthouse’ lab network to process test swabs”.
“When problems arise, we have contingencies in place which include creating extra temporary capacity for our labs or sending swabs abroad to partner labs for completion.
” Of course, our partner labs must match our high standards”.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson vowed this week that the UK will conduct at least 200,000 coronavirus tests daily by the end of May.
Johnson said the bar may “then go even higher”.