Prime Minister Boris Johnson gestures as he visits a construction site in Cheshire, August 6, 2020. REUTERS/Phil Noble/Pool

Prime Minister Boris Johnson stood by his description of UK’s system of testing and tracing coronavirus infections on Thursday (Aug 6), despite a fall in the number of people contacted by tracers.

Asked whether, in light of the latest data, he thought it was still a world beating system, Johnson said: “If you look at what we’re doing, actually I think it certainly is and it certainly does fit that description as world beating.”

His comment came as latest figures showed a fall in the number of close contacts being reached through the central test and trace in England – 72.4 per cent of close contacts in the week ending July 29, compared with 90.7 per cent in early June.

However, the local health protection teams were having more success – reaching 98 per cent of close contacts.

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