A TEAM of staff in Denbighshire are doing their bit to help the national efforts to tackle Covid-19.

As part of the Welsh Government’s Test, Trace and Protect (TTP) programme, Denbighshire County Council has redeployed staff from various departments to help track people who may have come into contact with the Coronavirus.

One of the contact tracing team members is Emer O ‘Connor, who normally works as a Planning Officer evaluating plans for new developments, visiting sites, liaising with consultees and assessing compliance with the Denbighshire Local Development Plan.

She said: “I volunteered to work on the TTP team at the end of May, as the Council were looking to put together a group of people to work on Contact Tracing for Covid 19. My manager was keen to support the multi-service TTP effort and I felt it would be an interesting and worthy piece of work to help out with.

“I have been redeployed to TTP full time for a few months so luckily I have not had to juggle two workloads, as that would have been quite a challenge.”

A Contact Tracers’ job is to phone individuals who have tested positive by Public Health Wales, going through their Covid 19 symptoms or testing timeline to ascertain when they may have been infectious.

They then trace their activities and the people who they have been in close contact with during the infectious period.

Ms O’Connor added: “For me the pressure comes from knowing that contact tracing has to be done promptly and well after testing. We have to try to get people talk fairly openly and reveal as much relevant information at possible. Recording and finding their contacts in order to ask them to self-isolate is the key to limit the spread of the virus in the community by breaking the link in transmission.

“The Team have been great to work with, we are lucky that the group has come from a range of backgrounds across the Council so the skill and information base is varied. Communications within the team and our supporters, the experts in in Public Protection has also been fantastic, this has helped tremendously.”

Councillor Mark Young, cabinet lead member for planning, public protection and safer communities, said: “Emer is part of a team of contact tracers who are doing a great job working on the Test, Trace and Protect programme in Denbighshire.

"This is a vital piece of work in the fight against Covid-19 in our communities and the effort in Denbighshire is reflected nationally in counties across Wales."