Test & Trace employee reveals he hasn't made a single call in four months

11 August 2020, 11:19 | Updated: 11 August 2020, 11:26

By Adrian Sherling

This Test & Trace employee told James O'Brien he hasn't made a single call in the four months he's been working there.

Anyone who's been in contact with someone who has coronavirus could get a knock on their door if tracers haven't been able to reach them on the phone or by text.

Plans have been announced to strengthen regional test and trace powers in England. It follows criticism the system wasn't local enough.

James called in from Lancaster to reveal the truth of working for the under-fire service. He is an agency employee for SERCO, the private company charged with running the Test & Trace service.

He said: "I've been on Test & Trace for four months and I still haven't got a clue what's going on.

"I have made absolutely zero calls in that four months. Not one.

"There's no data, the app doesn't work. You're told to constantly read the information they provide that changes every day, the scripts change every day. There's no communication. And I've not made one call. There's quite a few people working at the same company who are in the same boat as me."

READ MORE: Test & Trace employees "watching Netflix" and knitting to pass the time

James O'Brien heard how little a Test & Trace employee did
James O'Brien heard how little a Test & Trace employee did. Picture: LBC / PA

James revealed his frustration at receiving a "personal email" to employees from Rupert Soames, the SERCO CEO, telling him how well the company is doing.

"It said how much they are in profit, how many millions they've made. Then this week, I find out Test & Trace is ending.

"I just feel that that is an absolute kick in the face for anyone who has taken this job just to put food on the table for the family. There is no other work on."

Earlier today, Health Minister Ed Argar described the Test & Trace system as "a good start" as he announced changes to the process.

A spokesperson for the Department of Health and Social care told LBC: “The new NHS Test and Trace service is up and running and is helping save lives. Anyone in this country can now book a test and the majority who book a test get the results back within a day.

“We have over 27,000 contact tracers in place, who have all been trained and are fully supported in their work by public health experts.

“The public has taken their civic duty during the pandemic extremely seriously, and we need everyone to continue playing their part.”