The Wokingham Paper

Test and trace service fails to reach a quarter of positive cases

THE Covid-19 test and trace service has not been able to reach a quarter of people who’ve tested positive for the virus.

Since its launch on Thursday, May 28, the test and trace programme has been criticised for not being the “world-class” service promised.

And latest data shows NHS tracers have been unable to contact 24% of people since it began. 

This means at least 5,062 people with Covid-19 did not provide their close contacts to the NHS between Thursday, May 28 and Wednesday, June 17. 

Speaking to ITV, Keith Neal, Professor of epidemiology of infectious diseases at the University of Nottingham, said: “One in four positive people can’t be contacted – this is surprising and worrying – these people need to provide details to get the result of their test and they have a responsibility to be contactable.

“There has been a drop in the percentage of contacts who have been contacted from 90% to 80%, but this is still not a bad figure.” 

Cllr Ian Hudspeth, chairman of the Local Government Association’s community wellbeing board, said: “We all need to do whatever is possible to get this pandemic under control. It is good that the NHS Test and Trace scheme is up and running and vital that the system works as planned and that the majority of people continue to do their civic duty and share their contacts.”

Cllr Hudspeth called the situation “concerning”, adding that “those testing positive for the virus have a responsibility to help halt its transmission and protect those most at risk, including older people and those who are most vulnerable.”

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