Following feedback from previous outbreak response the Systematic Testing and Outbreak use case is proposing the creation of central resources to be deployed to assist DPH in the initial response to outbreaks. These would form a national strategic reserve that could be drawn upon by local authorities to enable activities at the local level. This will consist of specialist expertise through ‘surge’ teams and the provision of training, guidance and workforce best practice, where necessary.
A pool of various specialists will be formed to enable rapid deployment of multi-disciplinary surge teams to prevent and respond to outbreaks in urban areas. These surge teams will be led by ‘Crisis Programme Leaders’, who will serve as conduits between the national testing programme and local areas. Surge teams will undertake discovery and reconnaissance on behalf to the programme, to assess requirements and deploy testing to areas.
The Environmental Health officer will develop, implement and enforce health policies using specialist technical skills and knowledge to maintain and safeguard standards relating to people’s health and well-being in the surge team.
- Carry out inspections to ensure compliance with health and safety legislation and take action to improve conditions
- Educate and consult the surge team and enforce regulations governing hazardous and infectious waste; sewage; institutional environments; and health hazards
- Investigate incidents at work and complaints about poor standards of health and safety, identifying any areas of negligence
- Prepare and calibrate equipment used to collect and analyse samples