To receive an update from the Director of Public Health / Director of Children’s Services
The Director of Public Health presented a report which detailed a five point plan to manage and control, in the Rochdale Borough, the outbreak of Covid-19.
1. The first issue was testing - there was an ongoing review of local testing capacity and testing mechanisms to ensure that the most appropriate testing mechanisms were being used across for the Borough’s population. An alternative testing site in Rochdale was required to be located and operational by 4th December 2020, to ensure that there were no gaps in testing capacity.
2. In terms of Contact Tracing there was uncertainty around the continuity of the new case management system. There was an identifiable need for the escalation of wrongly identified contacts by the national team and the Department for Education’s helpline. There was also a requirement to: improve the number of cases contacted via T2 contact tracing service; to enhance Tier 2 service calls to build intelligence of activities/behaviour which result in people contracting the infection.
3. Protecting the vulnerable and keeping people safe - Work was ongoing to better understand ventilation as an important factor to mitigating against the risk of transmission and to attempt to understand if there is a link to the recent increase in outbreaks. Care Homes were undertaking detailed risk assessments to support the new visiting guidance. There were efforts to increase prevention work and to explore how lateral flow could be more effectively utilised.
4. Prevention, Settings and Enforcement – the key, it was reported was to continue with a joint Council and Greater Manchester Police approach to enforcement; to continue to undertake proactive monitoring of compliance; to continue to provide reactive responses to complaints of noncompliance; and to continue to have multi-agency patrols both during and outside office hours
5. Vaccination – this was to be hopefully achieved via a ‘Directed Enhanced Service’ that was to be published by the end of November 2020, and would work through ‘modelling assumptions’ and through locally ‘sense checking’ the delivery profiles and workforce supply. There would need to be the identification of a suitable estate for delivery, which would have suitable storage space to store medicines and the capacity to administer a minimum of 975 doses per week. It would also need the ability to deliver services 7 days per week from 8.00am to 8.00pm, including Bank Holidays (if required). It would also be large enough to accommodate the current ‘social distancing’ regulations.
In considering this matter the Board requested that, for the next meeting, a report be prepared which details statistics relating to the numbers of deaths and hospital admissions in the Borough as a result of Covid-19. The Director of Public Health was asked to circulate to Board Members an update on testing arrangements in the Borough.
1. That the report be noted.
2. The Director of Public Health be requested to submit a report to the next meeting of the Engagement Board, which details statistics relating to the numbers of deaths and hospital admissions in the Borough as a result of Covid-19.
3. The Director of Public Health be requested to circulate, to Board Members, an update on testing arrangements in the Borough.