National launches rapid test petition

National is launching a campaign to demand that the Government allow pharmacies and supermarkets to sell rapid antigen tests, Covid-19 Response spokesperson Chris Bishop says.

“Rapid antigen tests are available from supermarkets and pharmacies in almost every other developed country, but not in New Zealand.

“Testing centres are being overwhelmed, with people who just want to do the right thing having to wait in queues for hours and then up to seven days for the results. It’s not good enough.

“The Government needs to allow pharmacies and supermarkets to sell them, immediately legalise every rapid test available in Australia, stop confiscating private stocks, and fix the Close Contact Exemption Scheme so that every business and every school is eligible.

“Rapid tests should be widely available right now, so people worried about whether or not they have Covid can easily pick up a pack from a pharmacy or supermarket and test themselves.

“This is about personal responsibility, which is a foreign concept to this controlling Labour Government, but something that Kiwis – and National – strongly believe in.

“The Government dropped the ball on rapid testing. National has been calling for rapid antigen tests to be added to our testing toolbox for a year now.

“Rather than listen to us, Labour banned rapid tests for most of 2021. Then after belatedly allowing some companies to import them in November 2021, it confiscated tests imported by those companies to cover up their own incompetence at not ordering enough, early enough.

“New Zealanders are crying out for rapid tests. We’re asking Kiwis to sign our petition and demand the Government makes the tests available in supermarkets and pharmacies now.”

You can sign the petition here