Central Bedfordshire Council launches local Test and Trace pilot

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Coronavirus updates

Coronavirus update

Central Bedfordshire Council has become one of the first local authorities in the country to bring contact tracing in-house, in a new pilot scheme.

Test and Trace identifies people who have the virus and those that may have been infected much more quickly. It is critical to driving down the transmission of COVID-19, enabling a swifter response and tailored local support.

All local positive cases are directed straight to the Council’s team instead of the national track and trace teams. Previously, the process could take up to three days for the local team to receive cases. Now, CBC will be alerted to new cases within an hour of a positive test.

The new service began on Monday 1st March, where members of the team call each case and complete the Test & Trace questionnaire to identify their close contacts, understand where they may have been infected and ensure they all the necessary support to self-isolate.

In the first week, the service received 135 new cases, 85% of whom were contacted and information successfully captured, and 80% of contacts were successful on the first attempted call. This compares to a completion rate of just 64% in the national service.

The callers know the area and residents’ best needs, which means the new service can react faster and more effectively to save lives. Calls to local residents that have been identified as potential risk of catching Covid-19 are made from a local number, by local people. It is a service to guide and advise people on what they need to do if they have been identified at risk and answer any questions they might have about the process, to ensure residents can self-isolate safely during this pandemic.

If you have been identified at risk, you will be asked to begin a self-isolation period of 10 days, starting from the date at which you last had contact with the infected person. It’s important that you do self-isolate, even if you don’t have symptoms, to remove the risk of spreading the virus. Self-isolation means that you should not leave your home for any reason and, if you live with other people you should isolate from them at home as much as practically possible. You can find more information on self-isolation and what it means here.

COVID-19 health advice

Vaccinations - your questions answered

The Covid-19 vaccination programme continues to be a success with over 17 million people in the UK now had their first jab

However, some people are unsure about some of the things they have heard about the vaccinations.

To help reassure you and dispel some of the myths that are currently circulating, we’ve pulled together some of the common misconceptions and answers for you.

Read more about the vaccine

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With around one in three people who have coronavirus show no symptoms, testing is vital for those individuals who cannot work from home and have regular contact with other people through their job.

Regular testing will help identify more people who have COVID-19 and help to reduce the spread of the virus as they will know to self-isolate.

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Watch out for vaccine scams

Unfortunately some criminals are taking advantage of the roll out of the coronavirus vaccine to commit fraud.

The most important point to remember is that the vaccine is free of charge.

The NHS will never:

  • ask you for your bank account or card details
  • ask you for your PIN or banking password
  • arrive unannounced to your home to administer the vaccine
  • ask you to prove your identity by sending copies of personal documents such as your passport, driving licence, bills or pay slips

Find out more and how to report issues on the Action Fraud website.

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