Coronavirus testing (illustrative)
Coronavirus testing (illustrative) Yossi Aloni/Flash90

The Education Ministry has informed school principals that coronavirus inspectors are not to be permitted to conduct antigen tests for Covid-19 on school premises.

"The decision [to conduct the tests] was not coordinated with the Education Ministry, and the legal and administrative procedures have not been formulated," the Ministry wrote. "The Health Ministry should have obtained the cooperation of the Education Ministry before publishing its announcment, and until a formal arrangement is made with the Health Ministry, no action should be taken."

Responding to the development, Prof. Ran Balicer, the head of the government's coronavirus taskforce of experts on coronavirus, told Kan Reshet Bet that a dangerous situation was being created. "We want to be able to ensure that older people, for whom testing is so important, are able to be tested and receive preventative treatment that potentially saves lives. These people should be given priority for testing."

Professor Nachman Ash, director-general of the Health Ministry, added that, "We are now having to adapt our methods to a variant that is extremely contagious, in order to prevent serious illness in those infected. That is why we need to locate infected people quickly. We are doing a huge amount of testing, around 200 thousand tests per day, and infections are rising to the point that it is possible we will reach herd immunity - but that is not our aim, to have people getting infected."

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