I hope you have all had a restful weekend. There are strong reports that the R number is rising and anecdotally there seems to be a large rise in congregations and certainly traffic on the roads. The BBC have produced this resource which is quite useful for understanding what is and is not now permitted.
Mobile testing at Morley Leisure Centre
I have now heard that there will be a mobile testing unit at Morley Leisure Centre definitely on 16th May and on 18th May. Access to this will be through the normal national booking system and applicants will need to meet the normal requirements. You can find a full list of who is eligible for testing through the national system here, but as a reminder this comprises:
All essential workers including NHS and social care workers with symptoms (see the full list of essential workers)
Anyone over 65 with symptoms
Anyone with symptoms who cannot work from home (for example, construction workers, shop workers, ect )
Anyone who has symptoms of coronavirus and lives with any of those identified above
The Government has increase capacity at Temple Green, but Leeds City Council are still pushing for more capacity. LLC is offering up a variety of locations for MTU sites in the city. I will update you with any developments on this. The DHSC and the military control MTU, with some connections to NHS.
New portal for care homes to arrange coronavirus testing The Government launched a new online portal for care homes to arrange deliveries of coronavirus test kits on 13th May. As the national testing capacity has increased, the government is prioritising testing for care homes and other areas. All symptomatic and asymptomatic care home staff and residents in England are now eligible for testing. The Government will prioritise testing for care homes that look after the over 65s and those with dementia. LCC have developed this guidance for care homes in relation to the testing of symptomatic residents (known as ‘pillar 1’ testing) in care homes.This includes instructions for care home colleagues on taking and returning swabs. It also clarifies the role of the GP practice in following up positive results which the Government will relay to GP practices. I await to see how this portal works in practice. As at 13th May there are 25 care homes in Leeds with active coronavirus outbreaks, down from 40 last week. Active monitoring of care home cases continues, along with support from the Infection Control Team.
Council staff supporting our frontline services It’s been impressive to see how staff across the council have stepped up to support frontline services. One example I’d like to share with you is staff from Active Leeds sports centres. Active Leeds have been delivering PPE for the SkiLs Reablement Service in Adults and Health. The service helps people to remain independent after an accident, illness or as a result of growing older. The service elps them develop the skills and confidence to get back to doing everyday activities. Active Leeds staff have been delivering PPE so the SkiLs Reablement case officers can continue to provide the services.
House Moves The government has announced that from 13 May anyone in England can move home as long as they follow health guidance. Updated guidance provides advice about moving house during the coronavirus pandemic. All buyers and renters will now be able to complete purchases and view properties in person. At the same time estate agents, conveyancers and removals firms can return to work while following social distancing. Tradespeople including fitters can operate in homes, provided they do so in line with health guidance.
I am pleased to report that the organised ‘mass gathering’ protest arranged for Woodhouse Moor was a total flop as the people of Leeds observed the lockdown measures instead.
See Leeds Live article here: https://www.leeds-live.co.uk/news/leeds-news/live-updates-uk-freedom-movement-18261800