The government has missed its target of carrying out 100,000 coronavirus tests a day for the fourth day in a row.
Statistics published by the Department for Health and Social care show that just 69,463 tests were performed on 5 May, 30,537 short of the government’s goal.
So far, the government has only hit its target twice: on 30 April and 1 May, and those figures included tests counted when they were sent out to households or NHS care settings, or even when the government had merely agreed to send them out.
The decrease in testing on 5 May was mainly due to a drop in tests being sent out. Only 4,887 were mailed out, the lowest figure since the government started publishing a breakdown of testing methodology.
The total number of people tested so far, which is typically lower than the number of tests administered because people may need to be tested more than once, stood at 1,072,144 on 5 May.