Changes to contact tracing and self-isolation from this September 2021
I hope you and your child have enjoyed the summer break.
As we return to school, there are some new arrangements in place when someone tests positive for COVID-19. These changes have been made possible by the vaccination programme and the significant reduction in numbers being hospitalised and suffering severe illness due to COVID-19 over recent months.
If your child tests positive for COVID-19 using a PCR test, NHS Test, Trace, Protect (TTP) will contact you, using the details provided when the PCR test was ordered. They will ask questions designed to identify recent close contacts of your child, and for contact details – if you know them – of the individual(s) or their parent/guardian. TTP will then get in touch with these close contacts to provide instructions or advice.
If your child tests positive for COVID-19 using a rapid lateral flow LFD test, NHS Test, Trace, Protect (TTP) will contact you, using the details that are provided when the results are logged on www.gov.uk/report-covid19-result. TTP will ask questions designed to identify recent close contacts of your child, and for contact details – if you know them – of the individual(s) or their parent/guardian. TTP will then get in touch with these close contacts to provide instructions or advice.
It is crucial that any person undertaking LFD testing, either regularly or on a one-off basis, records each and every LFD result, whether positive, negative or void, in order to allow TTP to undertake contact tracing.
Anybody of any age is able to undertake LFD testing on a regular basis, and we would encourage you to do so. It is recommended to take a test twice a week. Kits are freely available from pharmacies and libraries across Powys, or via an online order delivered direct to your home. Please see the Powys Teaching Health Board website for details on where to collect kits or how to order online pthb.nhs.wales/coronavirus/coronavirus-testing/no-symptoms/
Those who are under 18 or fully vaccinated are no longer required to self-isolate if they are identified as close contacts. But they will be contacted to let them know that they’ve been in close contact with someone who has tested positive. They will also be offered two PCR tests and provided with information and advice on how to minimise the risks of onward spread. If your child is identified as a close contact, they can still attend school unless they develop symptoms or are advised otherwise by TTP. Please continue to let us know if your child tests positive.
If a child tests positive, TTP will also need to contact the school to help identify who are contacts. The aim is to keep the number of close contacts amongst their classmates to a minimum. But if there is a pattern of cases TTP may ask us to update you on the situation and remind you of key steps, including advising you to keep an eye out for new symptoms your child may develop, and to stay away from vulnerable family and friends in the short-term.