Dr Jyotsna Vohra, Director of Policy and Public Affairs, said:  

"When we take a quick and easy lateral flow test before meeting big groups, visiting the clinically vulnerable, or going into the office, we reduce the risk of COVID-19 transmission while keeping our daily lives, livelihoods and the economy moving forwards.

"As questions are raised as to whether the government will continue to provide lateral flow tests at no-cost in the future, RSPH hopes all available evidence on their public health, social, and pragmatic benefits in helping the nation live with COVID, and manage shortened periods of self-isolation, will be considered. 

"And at the very heart of the debate should be the impact such a decision would have on health inequality. The pandemic has made it very clear that socioeconomically deprived communities are at greater risk of COVID-19 infection and poorer health outcomes. To deny people the opportunity to keep themselves and others safe based on ability to pay would show government action moving in the opposite direction to the health inequality lessons we have painfully learnt."