New NHS TEST AND TRACE COVID-19 Local O Pilot Programme starts in Telford and Wrekin
• New scheme with government begins in Telford and Wrekin to help reach positive cases of coronavirus sooner
• Partnership between Telford and Wrekin Council and Department of Health and Social Care brings the Council in from the start of the tracing journey
• Programme will help support collective efforts to break chains of transmission and stop the spread of the virus
Telford & Wrekin Council and NHS Test and Trace have launched a new pilot scheme to help reach individuals who have tested positive for coronavirus sooner.
Known as ‘Local-0’, this new joint initiative will help support Telford & Wrekin Council to contact positive cases faster by bringing them in right from the start of the tracing journey, at the same time the case is entered into the national NHS Test and Trace system.
Through this new approach, Telford & Wrekin Council will now contact the individual directly rather than the national service and will be responsible for instructing the individual to self-isolate. Local contact tracers are also able to provide legal instructions and support to people who have tested positive and for members of their households who have to self-isolate.
The NHS Test and Trace programme will continue to trace the contacts of individuals who have tested positive, and will continue to provide support to local authorities throughout the process, in order to help stop the spread of the virus as effectively as possible.
The new pilot scheme will help ensure that the team at Telford & Wrekin Council are able to use local knowledge and expertise to determine where people may have caught the virus, which will help identify possible local outbreaks.
Cllr Andy Burford, Telford & Wrekin Council’s Cabinet Member for Health and social care, said: “This new joint initiative with NHS Test & Trace means that positive cases in our borough will be contacted faster and will self-isolate sooner, thus significantly helping to reduce the spread.
“This initiative, together with the increased rapid testing capacity already in place in our community is key for our borough’s return to a normal way of life.”
Baroness Dido Harding, Interim Executive Chair of the National Institute for Health Protection, said: “Stopping the spread of Covid-19 demands a collaborative effort and I congratulate Telford & Wrekin Council for participating in this pilot to further support the collective effort to tackle the spread of the virus. Our partnership with local authorities has now seen us reach more people than ever before and support them to self-isolate, many of whom might otherwise have unknowingly spread the virus to their loved ones.”