The swab kits, created by North Irish company Randox Laboratories, did not meet required safety standards, the government said.
On July 15, the government asked all laboratories to suspend their use of coronavirus test kits produced by the company “With immediate effect until further notice”.
Health Secretary Matt Hancock said there had been an issue with the swabs, but there was no indication that test results were affected.
“The Medicines and Health Products Regulatory Agency has asked Randox to recall all Randox test kits from the NHS testing and tracking settings,” the Department of Health said in a statement Friday.
The ministry said the decision was taken as a “precautionary measure”. The safety risk was low and the test results of the Randox kits were not affected, he added.
The system is estimated to contain up to 741,000 unused kits, whether in warehouses, nursing homes or private homes.
The ministry has issued opinions on how to return them.
For those at home, he said: “A postage-paid return envelope is included with the Randox COVID-19[feminine[feminine Home test kit.
“Therefore, the kit must be opened and the contents repackaged in the return envelope and the return postage label affixed.
“The label will direct the kit to the Royal Mail Collection Center in Northern Ireland. Randox will take receipt of these deliveries. ”
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Randox, who claims to be responsible for up to 17% of the total number of tests carried out in the UK, said the recall was a “regulatory measure” that applied only to sample collection kits under the NHS program.
Private customers or kits were not affected, he said.