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Gloucestershire Business News

Training more staff is key to reducing PCR testing costs

Technology innovator Credersi has teamed up with Covid testing solutions company DAM Health to create the world's first virtual reality Covid-19 lab training syllabus.

The move is aimed at increasing the number of lab technicians being trained in the UK to meet a mass skills shortage and crisis.

Research carried out by the Gatsby Foundation prior to Covid-19 indicated that, by 2030, the UK will require a further 700,000 Lab Technicians to support the UK economy.

Credersi believes that, given the magnitude of the pandemic, that figure will have potentially doubled. The company believes that increasing the number of trained lab technicians will help in the long run to reduce the unit cost of Covid testing over time.

The collaboration will see DAM Health supporting Credersi to bring technology into the lab, by funding the construction of a virtual and augmented reality platform in which to train the lab technicians of the future.

The first course under the new collaboration will be delivered in October, as an eight-week immersive programme. It will provide components of science, data science, data analytical programming and lab experiments. The course can be accessed anywhere in the world.

The course includes a 3D virtual lab, which will allow lab technicians and students to see an animated sequence of how to conduct a PCR test and use this as part of a wider training syllabus to educate them.

The 3D virtual lab will also be taken into schools and colleges as part of a wider programme to educate and inspire kids into STEM subjects using technology they relate to. It will show young people what a career in science looks and feels like

Andy Lord, CEO and co-founder of Credersi, said: "The addition of the 3D modelling to develop a course that has elements uniquely focusing on Covid-19 and PCR is a real game changer.

"There is a huge shortage of skilled lab technicians at the moment, and we aim to address that imbalance by injecting a new army of talented and trained lab technicians. Demand for lab technicians is outstripping supply in the market.

"Covid-19 testing will be with us for the foreseeable future. Understanding and learning about PCR testing and how this works will enable the lab technicians of the future to be better equipped to deal with future viral epidemics and pandemics."

Darren Coomer, co-founder of Credersi. said: "The high cost of PCR testing is often driven by a lack of skilled resources, so we hope our collaboration with DAM Health will help support the UK economy and travel industry by reducing the unit cost of testing over time."

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