April 23, 2020 11.40 am This story is over 20 months old

150 contact tracers needed in Lincolnshire after lockdown

We need more tracers before lockdown ends

150 contact tracers will need to be trained in order to tackle the spread of coronavirus in Lincolnshire after lockdown.

Both new and current staff will be trained by Lincolnshire’s public health team to track down and isolate people who have come into contact with positive COVID-19 cases.

Tony McGinty, assistant director of public health at Lincolnshire County Council, said the county would need a bigger team to tackle the scale of the virus.

It comes as the government announced it will aim to train contact tracers within weeks in order to exit lockdown.

Tony McGinty, assistant director of public health at Lincolnshire County Council. Photo: The Lincolnite

Among those to be part of the tracing teams will be civil servants and council staff, such as environmental health officers.

Up to 150 tracers will need to be trained in Lincolnshire in order to track down individual cases.

Mr McGinty said the move was an indication that the government was taking the next review of lockdown seriously.

“The indication is of them moving back to a system that we had before lockdown where we traced individual cases,” he said.

“It’s a normal step down from the lockdown measures.”

He added that the purpose of the contact tracers combined with increased testing was to deal with the spread of the virus after the restrictions are relaxed.

“What is going to happen is the virus will continue to spread and we need these measures in place to find those cases and to contain the spread,” said Mr McGinty.

Lincolnshire Showground could become the county’s single testing facility.

“The end of lockdown will not be the end of our experience with COVID-19.”

Along with contact tracing teams, the county will need an increase in testing capacity to confirm positive cases.

A new site was announced yesterday at Lincolnshire Showground which will see the three other facilities closed down.

Local health bosses recently set a target for 1,000 tests per day across the sites in Lincoln and Boston.

It comes as the county saw its biggest spike in daily case numbers since the first was tested positive in March.

An increase of 76 cases were confirmed yesterday (April 22) taking the total number to 669.

Health officials put the rise down to an increase in testing across the county.

Follow the latest coronavirus lockdown updates here

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