Britain has hired at least 17,000 people to trace people across the nation who have been close to the coronavirus positive people and therefore, the government is "on course" to achieve its set target. UK’s lawmaker Michael Gove said to an international media outlet on May 17 that the government has almost reached the goal of recruiting 18,000 contact tracers for testing ad tracking program who will start their role on May 18 when shops and schools will slowly begin to reopen as lockdown eases. Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, most countries have shut down to curb the further spread of the disease, but governments across the world have resorted to a combination of cell phone applications and human contact tracers to track everyone that would increase the control over the situation.
Similarly, these tracers are an integral part of the British government’s strategy of “test, track, and trace” which according to the UK lawmakers would avoid the second wave of coronavirus infections. The human contact tracers form only one part of a three-pronged approach that UK health secretary Matt Hancock had said would be launched by mid-May. Gove has reportedly confirmed in the interview that the system would be ready only by the end of this month. British officials are currently working on an application that can be accessed on smartphones and would use Bluetooth technology to map out the contacts of people.
The UK has been facing challenges with the easing of the restrictions too. While UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson unveiled his government’s plan to mark the gradual return of life to normalcy, the new rules have led to more confusion. There was reportedly a widespread criticism of the new rules that are complex even according to the UK PM. Johnson acknowledged that some people must “feel frustrated” with some of the new rules that the government imposed to ease the lockdown and said, “I understand”.
Earlier this week the UK lawmakers had begun easing the restrictions in England and allowed people who were unable to work remotely to go their offices. The changes were not applicable on Scotland, Wales or Northern Ireland. While people had called out on government over these new rules being confusing and delivering mixed messages, Johnson said that the government is trying to implement regulations that have never been done before in the wake of coronavirus outbreak.