Contact tracers report pair to police for ignoring self-isolation

Norwich City Council's City Hall headquarters. Photo: Nick Butcher.

Norwich City Council's contact tracing team has a 94pc success rate - Credit: EDP pics © 2007

Two people have been reported to the police by Norwich's coronavirus contact tracers - one for leaving their home after they were told to self-isolate and the other for refusing to comply.

Before the start of this month, Norwich City Council's contact tracers were only able to make contact with people who had tested positive for Covid-19 before the start of this month.

But Public Health England made money available so the team could, additionally, get in touch with people who had been listed as a contact for someone who had tested positive - to get them to self-isolate.

The team has been making phone calls and doorstep visits to tell people who have been in contact with someone who has tested positive that they must self-isolate for 10 days.

The service started on February 1 and, in the space of a month, 957 people were contacted - a success rate of nearly 94pc.

The team achieved close to a 100pc success rate on a number of the days, and has also delivered food parcels to 82 homes.

Of the 957 contacts, officers knocked on doors of 102 people, where no phone details were available or they did not respond to calls and voicemails within 24 hours.

The council said the small number who were not reached was due to insufficient data on forms given to find them (such as no address or working phone number.

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When the team were unable to reach someone by phone on any given day, they were scheduled for a ‘next day’ doorstop checks.

From the calls, one person reported not being happy to comply with the rules and one other person was found leaving the house after officers had told them to self-isolate.

The city council said both were reported to the police for further investigation.

Stephen Evans, chief executive of Norwich City Council. Pic: Norwich City Council.

Stephen Evans, chief executive of Norwich City Council. Pic: Norwich City Council. - Credit: Norwich City Council

Stephen Evans, Norwich City Council chief executive, said: "This is yet more evidence of the crucial role local councils are providing in the fight against Covid – developing completely new systems and solutions, which, in normal circumstances, are well outside of our usual responsibilities.       

“That said, I’m very proud of our achievements on such an important project.

"The high success rate we have speaks volumes and is testimony to the dedication of all those involved.”

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