The approach to managing the next stage of the pandemic in North Yorkshire is outlined in a detailed plan published today (June 26).
Our Covid-19 Outbreak Control Plan outlines how local knowledge, experience and expertise will be used to prevent outbreaks and manage the virus over time as part of the national Test and Trace programme.
Led by our Director of Public Health, the approach will see public health experts work with the public, businesses, the NHS, Public Health England, local government partners and the community and voluntary sector. Together they will work to support individuals, communities, businesses, education and care homes settings to understand how to prevent outbreaks via good hygiene and social distancing measures. Equally, it sets out how the county will respond when outbreaks occur and the measures necessary to control them.
The Director of Public Health for North Yorkshire is Dr Lincoln Sargeant. Launching the plan, he said: “Our plan outlines how we will respond, with our partners, to work effectively and at speed to manage outbreaks to help prevent any wider spread.
“It ensures there are clear protocols in place to respond wherever they might happen and outlines how we will focus on preventing infection in the first place through good education and guidance.
“As part of the NHS national Test and Trace programme the outcome will be that we can support the county, its residents, businesses, work force and visitors to return to normal life safely.
The plan in North Yorkshire is overseen by an Outbreak Management Advisory Board, chaired by the County Council’s Leader, Cllr Carl Les: “In North Yorkshire the collective effort to manage the terrible impacts of the coronavirus pandemic has been outstanding. Without the public response to support hand washing and social distancing measures over a prolonged period of time there can be little doubt that more loved ones would have been lost.
“It has hit us all hard personally, financially and emotionally and we want to now take the necessary steps in this next phase, to help get rid of it.
“And – everyone has their part to play. As the lockdown lifts further next week these principles are absolutely critical, so please wash your hands thoroughly and regularly, keep a safe distance from others and use face coverings and follow all the other guidance if two metres distance is not possible.
“We want to be clear this is the latest aspect of our commitment to reassure people that we continue to be here with you leading the fight to control coronavirus in North Yorkshire and helping everyone to Stay Safe.”
Chief Executive Richard Flinton said: “Our plan can only work with significant continued support from you, the public. Test and Trace will be effective only if everyone follows the NHS guidance. So please, if you have symptoms it’s really important you book a test and isolate until you get the results. Everyone in your household should stay at home with you until you know the test result.
“If it’s negative and your symptoms have gone you can all stop isolating. If it’s positive, an experienced test and trace professional will contact you and ask you about other places you may have been and any close contacts. By taking the test you are doing your bit to help your friends and family to stay safe and playing your part in Team North Yorkshire’s collective effort to get control coronavirus here. Thank you in advance for playing your part!”
See our Test and Trace pages for more information and to read more on our plan.
Acting Public Health Consultant Dr Victoria Turner talks about the outbreak plan and Test and Trace in North Yorkshire
Test and trace frequently asked questions