As we know, this week England moved into Step 4 of the government’s roadmap, with the majority of legal restrictions now lifted.
This is welcome for our economy as it is allowed to fully open but it’s also important to remember that the pandemic is far from over. Nowhere is this clearer than the number of people who are currently being asked to self-isolate; either via direct contact from NHS Test and Trace or via a notification from the NHS Covid-19 app.
This shows that the virus is very much still circulating in our community so I would encourage all residents to balance the risks with whatever you’re doing. Good hygiene, regular testing and getting both vaccinations are safer choices we can all make, but meeting outside (or keeping rooms well ventilated) and avoiding crowded places can also make a big difference.
I would also remind everyone that they do still need to self-isolate if notified whether double-vaccinated or not; this change does not come into effect until 16 August. Taking personal and community responsibility by making safer choices and balancing risks effectively will help us all get through what could be a difficult next few weeks.
Our rate is now the highest it has been throughout the pandemic (888.5 per 100,00 for 11th-17th July) and one of the highest in the country. Hospitalisations remain low in comparison to those concerning figures, but sadly we are still seeing and treating some seriously ill people of all ages . Our number of cases could well continue to rise for the next few weeks so anything that we can do in the meantime to prevent that rise would be welcomed.
With all this in mind, I would once again encourage anyone over the age of 18 to come forward for their vaccine, or get your second jab if it’s been 8 weeks since your first. It remains the best protection against serious illness from Covid.
Dr Rupert Suckling
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