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Local Solution for COVID-19 Track and Trace

In March 2020, horrified that the government seemed to be completely mismanaging the Covid pandemic and more particularly the whole Find, Explain,Test, Trace, Isolate, Support process, a group of mostly retired Public Health Consultants, ex-Directors of Public Health, GPs and other doctors created their own Contact Tracing Service in a neighbourhood of Sheffield.

The Community Contact Tracers are now 6 months' in to an initiative to train, supervise and coordinate volunteers, with referrals coming from local GPs, community groups and word of mouth.

Two reports highlighting the findings from the pilot phase of the programme which took place between April and June 2020 are available to read at:

https://www.communitycontacttracers.com/evaluation/

The steering group is now working closely with community organisations to develop a self-referral model that will be tested and evaluated in the second phase of this study. If successful, it is hoped that it will be widely taken on by the NHS, Public Health England, and Local Authorities.

In November the British Medical Journal published an Opinion Piece about the initiative:

https://blogs.bmj.com/bmj/2020/11/10/we-must-stop-being-polite-about-test-and-trace-there-comes-a-point-where-it-becomes-culpable/

As the authors say:

"The national Test and Trace is a disaster. Its design means that it cannot possibly contain outbreaks of covid-19. It is obsessed with testing at the expense of all the other necessary links in the chain of actions needed to control outbreaks."

Jack Czauderna, a member of the Community Contact Tracers team, has also written an article for Opus Independents' online magazine 'Now Then':

https://nowthenmagazine.com/articles/sheffield-community-contact-tracers

Find out more on the Community Contact Tracers website at:

https://www.communitycontacttracers.com