C&M DsPH weekly update w/e 12.2.21

The Cheshire & Merseyside (C&M) Directors of Public Health (DsPH) currently meet for weekly calls. The key messages from the 12th February meeting are as follows:

  1. PHE update – Rates of COVID-19 have declined across all areas however the reduction is moving slowly. Hospital bed occupancy and mortality still remain high.
  2. Public health paper – Stepping down from lockdown  – The DsPH have developed a briefing on recommended parameters that will help avoid the long term consequences of coming out of lockdown too early and the rationale for taking a longer term view of the management of COVID 19.  
  3. Future PHE model for health protection – The DsPH had a discussion about the future model for health protection in C&M and agreed that a slide deck will be produced with their recommendations to feed into PHE’s discussions.
  4. Contact tracing update – Julie Webster provided an update on the significant progress being made on contact tracing in C&M. This work will help C&M move forward in the context of the PHE North West Test Trace & Contain approach and framework. Julie also updated on the recent expression of interest submitted to the DHSC to strengthen the approach to contact tracing in C&M. Rita Huyton also provided an update on the work of the C&M Contact Tracing Hub
  5. C&M Health & Care Partnership (HCP) – A positive meeting was held with the HCP Executive Lead for Population Health, Sarah O’Brien. Future prevention priorities were discussed and a task and finish group will look at key priorities prior to submitting a funding bid to the HCP by 26 February.
  6. Future collaborative campaigns – Tracey Lambert talked through suggestions for future campaigns with DsPH. There was support for extending Kind to your mind and Spread the facts as these campaigns have been received positively.
  7. Good news and gratitude:
    1. Well done and thank you to the team in Sefton for their hard work on the surge testing of the South African variant and for sharing the learning with other areas.
    2. A press release on COVID secure workplaces with the Cheshire & Warrington LEP received good media coverage.