LONDON - New tests that can detect Covid-19 and flu, and give results in 90 minutes, will be rolled out in care homes and laboratories from next week.

Starting next week, the tests will be routinely used to check hospital and care home staff and patients, but there are plans for more than a million tests a day by the time winter arrives.

Ministers claim the “on-the-spot” swab and DNA tests will help distinguish between the coronavirus and other seasonal illnesses.

British ministers believe the revolutionary tests, which can be processed by portable machines, will see off the danger of another national lockdown by enabling them to test everyone living in towns or cities where there is an outbreak and swiftly isolating those who have the virus.

Members of Parliament have written to Boris Johnson urging him to introduce German-style tests at airports to replace blanket quarantine or risk being "left behind other nations".