NHS Test and Trace reaches first contact tracing target since May
- Credit: PA
The government's Test and Trace service has finally hit its contact tracing target for the first time since May.
Tracers were finally able to exceed the 80% target of close contact reached which experts say is needed to make the system effective.
The percentage of "close contacts" of people with Covid-19 in England reached 85.7pc for the week ending December 2, new figures reveal.
This is the second time the service has met that target since it was set up in late May, when it reached a high of 90.6pc before steadily falling to 59.6pc in late October.
The boost is being attributed to a key decision to phone households only once when they have been in contact with a positive coronavirus case instead of calling individual household members after users complained they were getting inundated with calls.
You may also want to watch:
The change will see adults or guardians become legally responsible for informing under-18's in their household to self-isolate.
"These operational improvements have resulted in an increase in the proportion of contacts reached and the proportion reached within 24 hours," the department for health and social care said.
The system had come under fire after it missed the 80pc target several months in a row and paid private contractors more than £7,000 a day to work on the system.
- 1 The biggest scandal may be that no rules were broken
- 2 A chapter is over for Britain, for good or ill
- 3 Russell Kane: Why working class people like Boris Johnson
- 4 BBC journalist admits being 'haunted' by fear broadcaster 'built up' Nigel Farage and UKIP
- 5 Alan Duncan should have spoken out sooner about Boris Johnson
- 6 Welsh government takes Westminster to court over post-Brexit bill
- 7 Ulster Unionism's crisis of faith
- 8 EU president faces fresh calls to resign over 'disastrous' Covid vaccine programme
- 9 The only Brexit export boom is from UK businesses rushing to Europe
- 10 PRINCE PHILIP: Why this Danish, Greek, German immigrant epitomised Britain
The latest figures - which cover the final week of the second national lockdown - reflect a general fall in cases.
A total of 96,415 people tested positive for Covid-19 in England at least once in the week to December 2.
This is down 13% on the previous week and is the lowest total since the week ending October 7.
Some 195,355 people were identified as coming into “close contact” with someone who had tested positive – defined as spending more than 15 minutes with them at a distance of less than two metres.
Become a Supporter
The New European is proud of its journalism and we hope you are proud of it too. We believe our voice is important - both in representing the pro-EU perspective and also to help rebalance the right wing extremes of much of the UK national press. If you value what we are doing, you can help us by making a contribution to the cost of our journalism.