Officials fear people may soon struggle to access a PCR test ‘anywhere near them’ within 48 hours of applying as experts issued a New Year’s Eve warning because of the ongoing testing supply crisis. 

Boris Johnson has asked the nation to be sensible and cautious during tomorrow’s festivities. 

Although the Prime Minister stated that everyone should take a test before going to parties, it is still not possible for people to undergo PCR and lateral flow tests this morning. This happens as testing chaos enters its fourth year. 

One Number 10 source stated that people don’t have to pass a test before leaving, but should do one whenever possible. 

This morning, a Government scientist advisor warned it’s’very worrying’ that New Year’s Eve could see people from England mix without passing a Covid Test. 

Peter Openshaw is a member of the New and Emerging Respiratory Virus Threats Advisory Group. (Nervtag). He said that indoor parties were ‘absolutely ideal’ to spread the Omicron coronavirus variant. 

A Government official said to The Telegraph that it could be difficult for people to obtain a PCR test at a drive-through or walk-through location within the next two days after asking. This is because demand increases. 

According to a source, PCR test demand continues to rise. Demand and available capacity have reached a point where they are almost at equal levels. However, we are on the verge of reaching the point when people will not be able to obtain PCR tests within 48 hours. So what are we to do in that situation? 

Although the government is being pressured to solve the test shortage, ministers are blaming global supply issues. 

Lateral flow tests and PCR test appointments are still unavailable this morning as the testing chaos enters its fourth day

As testing chaos continues to enter its fourth day of madness, PCR tests appointments and lateral flow tests are not available this morning.

Boris Johnson has urged the nation to enjoy celebrations tomorrow night in a 'cautious and sensible way'

Boris Johnson, the president of Boris Johnson’s National Party has asked that citizens enjoy tomorrow’s celebrations in a “cautious but sensible” manner

Professor Peter Openshaw, who sits on the New and Emerging Respiratory Virus Threats Advisory Group (Nervtag), said indoor parties are 'absolutely perfect' for spreading the Omicron coronavirus variant

Peter Openshaw is a member of the New and Emerging Respiratory Virus Threats Advisory Group.

Yesterday Mr Johnson declared that it was important for people to get tested before celebrating with family and friends. 

He said: ‘I think everybody should enjoy New Year but in a cautious and sensible way. You should take the test, ventilate, consider others and, above all, get a booster.

Rapid swab kits weren’t available online, and pharmacists advised that they were out of stock. However, the Government website continues to show they are still in stock for home delivery.

Appointments for drive-through and walk-in Covid tests were unavailable for hours on Wednesday – even for doctors, nurses and carers – and are still unavailable this morning.

The UK yesterday recorded a new record high of 183,037 coronavirus cases, amid growing fears the testing supply crisis could stop key workers taking tests to leave self-isolation and return to work.  

This morning Prof Openshaw was quizzed about his feelings on the possibility of people meeting tomorrow and not being able take a test. 

He told the BBC’s Radio 4 Today programme: ‘I think it is very worrying indeed. It is clear that we understand the circumstances in which transmission occurs, but I do not believe that we have to put up with the kind of lockdown required in order for this country to be able cope at the beginning of 2011.

“But we also know that crowding around in poorly ventilated areas, especially when you’re shouting and playing loud music, are perfect for transmitting the very, very dangerous virus.”

Asked if he believes new coronavirus rules will be needed in England in the coming days, he replied: ‘That really is a political decision. You know that scientists and experts can only predict the future based upon what we know. Once this information is known, it is up to politicians to decide what mitigation measures they will put into place.   

Professor Openshaw stated that it was still too soon to determine the impact of Omicron. 

He stated that he believes the NHS has now seen about 10,000 hospitalizations and approximately 70% of these are directly related to Covid. 

“The last 10 days have seen an almost double in hospitalisations. These figures always show a significant lag and it’s too soon to determine what this means in terms of the number of people who will be very sad to die.

“But, I believe it is inexorable that these will appear over time as patients present and progress through this disease.”

Professor Openshaw was asked if he expects an increase in Covid patients in intensive Care. He said that he didn’t know what would happen to those not vaccinated. Also, remember that many people are not eligible to receive vaccines and it is unclear what will happen for the elderly and more vulnerable.

“So far, there’s been a high number of infection in children. This has spread to parents and to children of the same age, which is now showing signs of spreading through all age groups.

In recent weeks, test demand has risen dramatically due to the government’s decision to reduce self-isolation time from 10 to 7.  

Officials acknowledged that there may be temporary pauses in order or receipt of tests during times of high demand in an effort to control distribution throughout the system.

For most of the day yesterday, the Government website showed there were no home deliveries available for lateral flows, but officials insisted they were adding new ones every few hours

The Government website did not show any home deliveries for lateral flow yesterday. However, officials claimed they added new ones each hour.

Supply issues have been exacerbated by the Christmas-shortened postal service. 

Sajid Javid (Health Secretary) admitted yesterday to a Tory MP that the Government was facing supply challenges worldwide.

Sir Roger Gale said Mr Javid had confessed there was a problem with supplies – previously ministers and officials had insisted they had sufficient stocks but the problems were in delivering them to people’s homes or pharmacies.

According to a Number 10, a source said that while people don’t need to pass standardized tests to get out, it would be advisable. 

Source told The newspaper that the government did not tell them not to go outside.

It’s personal responsibility. People should take the test whenever they can.