A NEW, local test and trace system is now being rolled out in Bradford.

The district has seen high infection rates in recent weeks, and earlier this month Bradford Council announced plans for a more localised test and trace system, which would benefit from local knowledge.

The new local level contact tracing model will support the NHS test and trace programme.

This model was piloted in Leicester and has now been rolled out across a number of local authorities, which allows local authorities to use their own local expertise and resources to increase the proportion of people reached by the Test and Trace programme.

Contact tracing helps to identify those people who are at a high risk of infection, as they may have been in close contact with someone who has tested positive for COVID-19.

With infection rates in Bradford remaining stubbornly high, other local action is being taken to contain the COVID 19 virus, particularly in areas where the number of positive cases is known to be higher. 

Test and trace failing to contact 'high numbers' of people in Bradford

Teams of volunteers and council staff will be out on the streets of Bradford to share health messages, support on staying safe as well as stating how people can reduce the spread of the virus by adhering to hygiene guidelines.

Free and easy to use home testing kits will be delivered to households, by the volunteers, with instructions on how to carry out a test and will then be collected by the volunteers.

If anyone tests positive as having COVID-19 they will then be notified and asked to give vital information that will help workers understand where the virus is and where health services need to focus local action.

Sarah Muckle, Director of Public Health at Bradford Council said: “The virus is still out there and we have seen an increase in infection rates over the last few weeks in Bradford and so its imperative that we focus all our efforts in this next step to target those high risk areas in order to rid us of COVID-19.

“All of our volunteers are fully trained and have a wealth of local knowledge which allows them to support the groups through face to face contact.

“As well as having these home testing kits we still have a good presence of testing units across Bradford district for everyone to use.”