Neither the HSE nor the Minister for Health are prepared to provide the actual numbers of people contact traced and tested as a result of being in proximity of meat plant employees who tested positive for Covid-19.
Even in today’s reply from the Health Minister he has not been prepared to provide that simple answer, and we must ask why?
In recent weeks, the HSE has been playing with words rather than giving straight answers as to the contact tracing of meat plant workers and those in close contact with them.
People who have been in close contact with meat plant staff who tested positive for the virus are supposed to be traced and tested for Covid-19 in order to limit the spread of the disease.
And even though I asked a straight question of the Minister for Health in Dáil Éireann last week, I’m still waiting for an answer as to how many people have been traced and tested.
Seven weeks ago, I first brought the problems with contact tracing within the meat industry to the attention of senior HSE management. As a result of that a multi-agency group was established to look at the outbreaks in the meat processing industry, which was a welcome development.
Why are the health authorities not prepared to tell us how many close contacts of Covid positive meat plant employees have been contacted and tested for the virus?
Letter from Minister Harris: 10th June 2020 – Deputy Denis Naughten – Contact Tracing