'Blood boiling': Fury over major issue that could destroy Christmas plans

There is ongoing concern and frustration over Covid testing results potentially ruining plans for interstate travellers ahead of Christmas.

To get into Queensland, interstate travellers need to return a negative PCR test from a certified clinic within 72 hours of arrival. When receiving a PCR test, people are told to wait anywhere between 24-48 hours to receive results.

It seems simple enough, but there are reports some clinics are taking longer than 72 hours to return results.

People queue at the St Vincent's Bondi Beach COVID-19 drive through testing clinic in Sydney, Australia.
Cars queue at a Bondi Beach drive-thru clinic. Source: Getty Images

Nine News reporter Damien Ryan told 2GB he spoke with a woman in her 80s due to fly to Queensland on Tuesday about 11am. She had a test on Saturday and was told results would be made available on Monday.

But Ryan claims the woman was told on Monday results would take another 24 hours, meaning she now faces getting on the plane to Queensland without her results.

“She’s in limbo,” Ryan told 2GB.

Ryan believes the high testing rate is mostly being driven by interstate travellers. In the past 24 hours, more than 140,000 tests were conducted, according to NSW Health.

It was about the same on Saturday too.

One woman tweeted she has waited about 72 hours to get a test result back after arriving from overseas.

“I got my test on Thursday midday at Central Pathology and I still haven't heard the results,” one man tweeted.

He tweeted he will now undergo a rapid antigen test to find out if he’s negative.

Queues are also causing headaches with some clinics turning away patients. Huge queues have been seen across the state for a number of days now with many people being turned away due to the sheer number of test recipients.

Angus Horton receives a COVID-19 test at the St Vincent’s Hospital drive-through testing clinic at Bondi Beach in Sydney.
Some people have complained of being turned away from clinics due to the number of people asking for tests. Source: AAP

Paul from Allambie Heights told 2GB his “blood is boiling” after he claims he’s been to three different clinics and been turned away from all of them. A number of clinics are also closing at 4pm.

Ben, who lives in Gymea, complained of similar problems after being unable to get a test at two different clinics.

Australian Pathology CEO Liesel Wett told 2GB the test turnaround currently is about 48 hours and put the queues and result times down to a large number of tests.

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