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Coronavirus: Liverpool

Question for Department of Health and Social Care

UIN 130053, tabled on 15 December 2020

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what assessment he has made of (a) false positive and (b) false negative test results during Liverpool’s mass testing programme from 6 November 2020.

Answered on

16 March 2021

Specificity relative to polymerase chain reaction (PCR) testing was extremely high at around 99.9% or a false positive rate of around 0.1%. Many individuals detected with PCR were no longer infectious and the lateral flow device tests detected 91% of cases with higher viral loads. This means around 9% were not detected or false negatives.