Newly published figures show that over a quarter of people in Hounslow who receive a positive result from a Covid-19 are not being reached by the test and trace system.
Test-and-trace teams are struggling to reach people who have coronavirus to find out who they’ve been in touch with – one in five sick residents was not successfully contacted across the capital with more than a third of potentially infected residents unaware they need to self-isolate.
Hounslow had the fifth worst success rate for contacting people with the disease to inform them to self-isolate with just 76% of the 265 people who tested positive reached according to the latest Government data covering test-and-trace up to two weeks ago (Wednesday August 19).
Barking and Dagenham had the lowest success rate with just 69% traced. By contrast, Camden tracers reached 86 per cent of people in the borough, with 85 per cent contacted in Barnet.
In every borough, at least a quarter of people who could be sick, including those in contact with people with positive tests, were not contacted by test-and-trace – well over 4,000 so far.
Anyone who has the symptoms of coronavirus – a cough, high temperature, or loss of smell or taste – should self-isolate immediately and order a test to check if they have the disease.
|Borough Data (Department of Health and Social Care)|
|People who tested positive who were contacted (up to 19 August)|
|Upper Tier Local Authority||Total||Reached||Percentage|
|Barking and Dagenham||157||109||69|
|City of London & Hackney||313||230||73|
|Kensington and Chelsea||104||78||75|
|Hammersmith and Fulham||148||115||78|
|Kingston upon Thames||101||81||80|
|Richmond upon Thames||110||91||83|
If they test positive for Covid-19, virus tracers will get in touch and ask who the person has been in touch with recently. Close contacts will then be notified that they may have the virus and told they should also self-isolate.
Once tracers have spoken to someone who has tested positive and compiled a list of their recent contacts, they then attempt to reach those people and tell them to self-isolate as well.
Hounslow also performed relatively poorly when it came to reaching these contacts with a success rate of just 58%, the fifth lowest of any London borough. Tracing teams spoke to less than half of potentially sick residents in Hackney and the City of London – meaning most people who need to self-isolate in the area are unaware of it.
|Follow-up contacts reached (up to 19 August)|
|Non-complex close contacts identified|
|Upper Tier Local Authority||Total||Reached||Not Reached||Percentage|
|City of London & Hackney||693||333||360||48|
|Barking and Dagenham||282||150||132||53|
|Hammersmith and Fulham||267||167||100||63|
|Kensington and Chelsea||147||92||55||63|
|Richmond upon Thames||328||219||109||67|
|Kingston upon Thames||218||153||65||70|
The most successful boroughs in London were Merton and Bromley, but even in these areas less than three quarters (73 per cent) of potentially infected residents were contacted.
But London is faring better than the rest of England, reaching 80 per cent of people who tested positive for the disease compared to 77 per cent in the rest of England.
Test-and-trace is also better at following up with people who could have the virus in the capital – reaching 63 per cent of residents compared to 57 per cent in the rest of England.
For more information to get a test locally, click here.
Written with contributions from - Local Democracy Reporter
September 1, 2020