Information sharing on Covid-19

Dear Sir/Madam

Last week I raised the issue of the need for better information on the spread of the coronavirus with Gloucestershire County Council. Without such information we cannot exercise common sense about where we go and who we see while keeping our community safe. I am pleased to say that Mark Hawthorne, leader of the County Council, agreed and I look forward to seeing a daily updated data dashboard on the GCC website.

However, the news from Leicester makes it clear that central government is not sharing data about Covid-19 cases with local councils or GPs. It took a full ten days for the true extent of the outbreak there to be known locally. In the containment of contagious disease speed of response is essential, so this delay will have resulted in many more cases and almost certainly additional deaths.

I am appealing to our six Conservative MPs in Gloucestershire to demand that all cases of Covid-19 are referred to their GPs and to local authorities, as is normal practice for notifiable diseases. While the government keeps this vital information secret they are putting all our lives at risk.

Molly Scott Cato

Stroud District Green Party