PS and BE criticized, at a council executive meeting, the new rules for accessing free tests in the city, in force since Saturday, considering that they limit access to testing.

With the new rules, the municipality started to pay for screenings in pharmacies only after the user has exhausted the tests that they are entitled to monthly via the NHS (six) and, after that, only pays for tests performed at minimum intervals of three days, both in pharmacies and in fixed centres installed by the council.

Deputy mayor of the city council, Filipe Anacoreta Correia (CDS), stated that there had never been as many tests in the city as in November and December and that the municipal testing network has increased, with the installation of more centres and with the extension of opening hours.

Anacoreta Correia guaranteed that there is no reduction in the testing capacity, on the contrary, and that the chamber is working to increase it, through protocols with analysis laboratories, and at the moment there is only an agreement with one.

He said he hopes there will be more labs with Câmera protocol "quickly".

Regarding the tests in pharmacies, he said that the chamber has already spent around 13 million euros on tests for covid-19 and that, until this week, the Government's contribution to screenings in the city was almost nil.

Anacoreta Correia added that the Chamber continues to guarantee all free tests carried out by non-residents in Portugal, who do not have a National Health Service (SNS) user number.