In response to the Welsh Government’s Test, Trace, Protect strategy, partners including Public Health Wales, the Aneurin Bevan University Health Board and the five Local Authorities in Gwent have joined forces to start contact tracing in Gwent and the service will go live on Monday June 1.
A work-force of over 300 people could be needed over time to support the strategy and limit the spread of coronavirus (covid-19) in Gwent.
People who test positive could be contacted by the contact tracing team and asked to share details of other people they have been in close contact with, for example at home or at work.
Staff in the contact tracing service will then call all these ‘contacts’ and provide advice on what they should do.
Depending on the situation, this might include:
• Isolating at home for 14 days
• Having a test for covid-19
• Daily follow-up phone calls to people in order to check for symptoms
• Providing vulnerable people with specific advice and guidance
• Reinforcing advice on hygiene at home and in the community, and social distancing
Councillor Nigel Daniels Leader of Blaenau Gwent Council, said:
“Contact tracing is a one of the keys in limiting the spread of coronavirus in our community.
The test, trace and protect strategy will support anyone who has tested positive for Covid-19 and track the people they’ve could have transmitted the virus to.
We all need to play our part, keep social distancing and isolate when instructed to reduce the transmission and spread of the virus. I hope that this will be a major factor in easing lockdown restrictions and enabling the social and economic recovery here in Blaenau Gwent.”
There will be 7 contact tracing teams in Gwent with work coordinated by a Regional Team.
Judith Paget, Chief Executive of the Aneurin Bevan University Health Board, said:
“I’m pleased to see the track and trace programme launch in Gwent. The approach will allow us to identify cases and ensure people who test positive isolate at home and their contacts are provided with the advice they need. This will work to reduce the spread of coronavirus across Gwent. I’m very proud of the work we’ve done so far, while I recognise there is still more to be done to protect the NHS and the people of Gwent.”
The most common symptoms of coronavirus are recent onset of one or more of the following:
- A new continuous cough
- High temperature
- Loss of or change to sense of smell or taste
You should stay at home for seven days if you have symptoms. If you live with someone who has symptoms but are well, you should self-isolate for 14 days.
For more information please visit the Public Health Wales website: www.phw.nhs.wales/coronavirus