By Leah Conway & Tatiana Zaituni
This week Kirklees infection rate decreases by 23% but remains among the highest in the country. The public is still urged to remember the basics, stay safe, get tested and follow the rules.
Cases and Hospitalisations
The infection rate in Kirklees has fallen by 23 per cent over the last week. However, the infection rate remains among the highest in the country with 55 people per 100,000 in Kirklees testing positive for COVID-19.
There were 243 new confirmed positive cases in Kirklees over the last week compared to last week’s 316 confirmed cases.
The number of people in local hospitals with the virus continues to decrease but 11 people are still being treated in local hospitals compared to last weeks 16.
There has been one COVID-19 related death in local hospitals down from last weeks 4
In the last 7 days, there has been 14, 311 confirmed positive cases nationwide, a further decrease of 1500 from last week cases. In the last 7 days, there has been 81 COVID-19 related death within 28 days of a positive test, which is down 76 compared to last week.
Remember you can receive free lateral flow at-home tests. To find out how to get yours click here.
Lockdown restrictions were eased on 29 March. Here’s what rules are currently in place:
Lockdown restrictions easing means that outdoor gatherings of either 6 people or 2 households will be allowed. This includes private gardens.
Outdoor sports facilities will reopen, organised sports can begin again and outdoor parent and child groups will be permitted (up to 15 Parents or guardians)
Restrictions eased this week, which allowed several services to reopen. The following venues and businesses are now able to open:
- All retail.
- Hairdressers, beauty salons and nail bars.
- Public buildings like libraries
- Outdoor hospitality like beer gardens.
- Outdoor attractions like zoos, theme parks and drive-in cinemas.
- Indoor leisure like swimming pools and gyms.
- Self-contained holiday accommodation like self-catering lets and campsites for household stays only.
The next wave of restrictions easing will be no earlier than 17 May. You can find out about the new rules here.
As of this week, a total of 34,934,171 people have received their first vaccination. Those who have accepted the second dose total is 16,291,719.
Over 207,000 local people in Kirklees have had their first vaccination and over 107,000 have had their second dose too. People aged 40 and over are urged to book their vaccination now.
“We all have a crucial role to play.”
Rachel Spencer-Henshall, Strategic Director for Public Health at Kirklees Council, said: “The success the rollout of the Covid-19 vaccine is having in Kirklees is fantastic and it’s thanks to the 207,000 of you who have had at least your first dose and of course, the remarkable health staff and volunteers who have made this possible.
“We have started to see the number of people in local hospitals and deaths related to the virus drop and remain low since the beginning of the vaccine programme. This is really encouraging, but we need to make sure we don’t become complacent.
“Our infection rate is still something we need to monitor closely because it is telling us that the virus is still spreading in our communities and more so in Kirklees than most other areas in England. As more and more restrictions are lifted, we have to make sure our infection rate does not increase and lead to more people being admitted to hospital or losing their lives.
“Now is the worst possible time to think we’re out of the woods and we all have a crucial role to play in getting Kirklees through the roadmap out of lockdown safely.
“When it’s your turn, please take the vaccine – if you’re over 40, you can book your appointment right now. The vaccine is safe, effective and protects both you and your community.
“Over 300,000 vaccinations have now been administered in Kirklees and the programme is successfully bringing down the number of people needing hospital treatment.
“The vaccination programme benefits all age groups and it’s important for us all to take it when it’s our turn. It doesn’t matter how young or healthy you are, Covid-19 still presents a risk and the vaccine protects us all.
“By working together, we can bring our infection rates down, ease pressure on our health services and finally get our lives back to normal. Thank you for playing your part.”
This week’s COVID-19 News
- On Sunday there was a pilot mini-festival in Liverpool as a trial to research how large gatherings can safely take place again. It involved 5000 people packed in dancing and singing with no masks, social distancing, no fines.
- Scientist have been researching the environmental impact of disposable masks; they could be release chemical and nano-plastic pollution.
- Chief Executive, Heather Nelson of the Black Health Initiative has teamed up with York St John University. They will survey people on their reason for not taking up a COVID jab. This follows abusive and racist calls received by the charity. People have attacked them about the lower take up percentage of the vaccine in black communities. Ms Nelson commented, “Rather than blaming the black community for not having the vaccines, let’s look at the reasons why”. Ms Nelson discussed issues such as a lack of trust in institutions and authorities, which informed by a history of unethical medical trials and poor and insensitive personal experiences.
- The UK has administered more than 50 million COVID-19 vaccine jabs.
- Bank of England has said that the reopening of highstreets will result in a mini spending boom.
- According to the BBC, mosts of the UK’s 50 biggest employers do not plan to bring staff back to the office full-time.
- There is concern that COVID aid sent to India is not reaching those most in need with cargo sitting in airport hangers for several days despite increasing high demand.
- Prof Neil Ferguson commented that the UK is “likely to be on a steady course now out of this pandemic.”
- Boris Johnson commented that the government might scrap the 1m social distancing if all goes to plan on June 21.