Amsterdam limits contact research again, other GGDs will follow

Once again, Amsterdam is restricting contact research among people with a corona infection. Infected residents have to inform and advise their close contacts themselves to go into quarantine for the time being. Only high-risk cases are still called in by the Municipal Health Service. The source and contact research will continue.

“We are asking for more responsibility from infected people to inform their own environment,” says a spokesperson for the Amsterdam Municipal Health Service. “The path is different, the result remains the same: finding and informing people who may be able to spread the virus as quickly as possible

In August Amsterdam also had to decide for three weeks on the so-called ‘risk-driven contact research’. Despite a substantial upscaling, due to the increasing number of infections, the GGD once again has insufficient staff to call all contacts of infected people themselves.

Kennemerland, Gelderland-Midden and Twente

In addition to Amsterdam, the restriction on contact research also applies immediately in the regions covered by the Kennemerland Municipal Health Service (Schiphol and environs), the Gelderland-Midden Municipal Health Service (Arnhem), the Gelderland-Zuid Municipal Health Service (Nijmegen) and the Twente Municipal Health Service. At GGD Haaglanden, the restriction had been in place since Tuesday.

It is possible that more GGDs have already instituted the contact restriction. The umbrella organisation GGD GHOR Nederland tells the CCeit that it is still working on an overview.

The source and contact research is seen as one of the most important means of keeping the virus under control. By checking the contacts of an infected person immediately, the chance of spreading the virus is reduced. The responsibility for notifying close contacts now lies with the infected persons themselves in five regions.

Contact investigation capacity exceeded

This week, contact research in its old form, in which the GGD has to make three phone calls per close contact, has come under pressure. The GGD is still working to have enough researchers by the end of September to be able to carry out a maximum of 1500 examinations per day. In the past three days, however, the number of infections has already exceeded that capacity.

The fact that the GGD Kennemerland is now also restricting contact research has consequences for people who have been on an aeroplane with an infected person. “All close contacts in an aircraft are still called but not monitored. If we don’t get a hold of them, we send them an e-mail. So they won’t be called after,” says a spokesperson.

How does source and contact research actually work? Step into the shoes of a contact researcher and look for possible infections. Attention: time is ticking – and turn on your sound: