Coronavirus: LGA responds to NHS track and trace service

“COVID-19 is best understood as a pattern of local outbreaks, rather than a national pandemic with a similar impact in every community, which is why councils as local leaders have a fundamental role to play in the test and trace service."


Close up of a COVID 19 virus

Responding to the government launch of the new NHS Test and Trace Service, Chairman of the Local Government Association’s Community Wellbeing Board, Cllr Ian Hudspeth, said:

“COVID-19 is best understood as a pattern of local outbreaks, rather than a national pandemic with a similar impact in every community, which is why councils as local leaders have a fundamental role to play in the test and trace service.

“It is good government has recognised the importance of directors of public health within councils, who need to have the necessary powers and authority to lead the response locally and tackle outbreaks early and aggressively.

“The success of the programme will also depend on the continued support and co-operation of the general public. We believe they would be reassured and encouraged if the roll-out of the service is underpinned by the leadership of their local council.

“Environmental health, emergency planners, trading standards, public health including sexual health services and infection control nurses are just some of the council services which can use their considerable expertise and unparalleled experience, to help in stopping the spread of coronavirus.

“As we move into the next phase, it is important that councils have the capacity and necessary data to play their full part in this national programme, so they can understand where the outbreaks are happening and be able to act quickly to contain them.”