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Tracers failed to interview 560 people within 48 hours last week

October 21, 2020 5:00 PM
Originally published by Scottish Liberal Democrats

Scottish Liberal Democrat leader Willie Rennie today said there is a "dangerous lack of capacity" within Test and Protect after new statistics showed that last week a further 560 people weren't interviewed about their whereabouts and contacts within 48 hours of their positive test being logged.

Scottish Liberal Democrat analysis of today's Public Health Scotland data shows the number of people waiting over 48 hours between their positive case being logged and being interviewed by contact tracers:

Week ending

Number of people waiting 48-72 hours

Number of people waiting more than 72 hours

Total waiting more than 48 hours
18 October
11 October
4 October 228 213 441
27 September 120 57 177

20 September

49 23 72
13 September 57 39 96
6 September 31 7 38
Time between the record appearing on the Contact Tracing Case Management System and the positive individual being interviewed

Willie Rennie commented:

"Last week government tracers again failed to interview 560 people who had tested positive within 48 hours. Within that, a record 246 people had to wait more than three days to tell tracers about their contacts and whereabouts.
"Ministers gave the impression that their system was superior and that it could withstand whatever the virus threw at it. But these systematic delays put people at risk because every minute counts when you are hunting down the virus and trying to stop the spread.
"The tracing reinforcements we were told would be able to double the workforce "within 48 hours" are nowhere to be seen. Today's statistics show a dangerous lack of capacity.
"Ministers need a new plan to build capacity and get every positive case interviewed within hours, not days. We need to see it this week because the system should have been strengthened sooner. The public have made major sacrifices over the past 7 months to save lives and buy time. Ministers need to keep their side of the bargain."