Experts say postcode-level data needed for local lockdown to work in Nottinghamshire

Hyper-local data will be needed for local lockdown plans to work, Nottinghamshire County Council has said.

Friday, 5th June 2020, 3:55 pm
Updated Thursday, 11th June 2020, 11:30 am

As the number of cases comes down, the idea is to instigate local lockdowns.

The county council and city councils have been told to draw up their own local outbreak control plans by the end of the month.

It is not yet clear how local the lockdowns will be – whether they can be contained to a few streets, or if they will apply to whole towns and villages.

A broad range of organisations will be involved in drawing up and implementing the plans.

A county council report says: “Implementation of the preparedness and response elements will be overseen by (the county council’s) Director of Public Health, working closely with Public Health England’s local health protection arrangements, district and borough councils, and with the Local Resilience Forum.

“Political leadership will be exercised through what the guidance describes as an engagement board.

“The terms of reference for the engagement board will be developed as part of the plan.”

The council has also said a number of factors will be needed for the plan to be a success.

The council says: “Achieving the objectives of the plan will depend not only on local collaboration but also on the role of national government in delivering reliable testing infrastructure and timely unfettered access to postcode level information about new cases.”

Asked specifically whether postcode-level data would be made available, a spokesman for the Department of Health and Social Care commented: “The NHS test and trace service has an important role in limiting the spread of the virus, and already thousands of those who have tested positive have been contacted and their close contacts traced.

“As has always been the case, a specialist team from the local authority or Public Health England manages any local outbreaks and we are making £300 million available to local authorities to develop local outbreak control plans.”

The work carried out so far in Nottinghamshire was due to be discussed by the council’s policy committee this week.