Decision Maker: Director of Public Health
Decision status: Recommendations Approved
Is Key decision?: No
Is subject to call in?: No
An overarching Doncaster COVID Testing
Strategy is in place which aligns to the objectives of
Doncaster’s outbreak control plan. It outlines the wide range
of testing approaches including symptomatic testing and
asymptomatic testing. The opportunities for accessing testing is
constantly evolving and therefore necessary that our approach is
flexible and reactive to the Government’s developments.
Doncaster Council has been providing asymptomatic community testing since 14th December 2020 via assisted testing sites where residents can access testing twice a week. Approval was provided to accept funding up to £2.8m via a Rule 16 on the 14th January 2021 and delegated to the Director of Public Health in consultation with the Director of Corporate Resources and the Portfolio Holder for Public Health future decision making regarding the Community Testing funding. For the period to the end of March 2021 covered in the key decision the Council is expected to recover £792k from the Community Testing Grant.
As part of the government’s ambition to support COVID testing as a habit, they have now asked local authorities to continue assisted testing until 30th June 2021. The anticipated cost that can be recovered from the Community Testing Grant is expected to be circa £876k and therefore still falls within the amount approved in the key decision in January.
To support the government’s response to Community Testing further funding has been made available in the form of the Community Collect Grant. The funding is based on an associated costs to distribute test kits and Doncaster is expected to receive circa £81k.
Test kits are being made available for residents to be able to self-test at home. Our proposal is to provide residents with the opportunity to access this home testing kits via our Community Testing sites and also via the mobile testing van that will be able to be placed in locations where access to testing is limited.
Such funding by DHSC will be made by way of grants under section 31 of the Local Government Act 2003 and amending the existing Collaboration Agreement already in place for Community Testing.
To extend the delivery of Community Testing
until 30th June 2021 and to provide a Community Collect model to
enable residents to access home lateral flow test kits.
To accept receipt of funding to deliver our Community Collect Testing proposals circa £81k.
ALTERNATIVE OPTIONS CONSIDERED AND
Not to take receive the Grant and not deliver Community Testing in Doncaster which would result in poorer access to asymptomatic testing for people living, working and visiting Doncaster.
Publication date: 08/04/2021
Date of decision: 07/04/2021