By Leah Conway
From today the extra precautions for Covid-19 against the new Omicron variant come into action nationwide and on a local level in Kirklees.
This means that it is now compulsory to wear face masks on public transport and in shops. People who have been in contact with those who tested positive for the Omicron are being contacted and need to isolate. The restrictions also impact testing concerning travelling to the UK.
Following the Prime Minister’s announcement on Saturday 27 November, West Yorkshire Organisation, West Yorkshire’s Local Resilience Forum (WYLRF), has released an appeal to the residents of West Yorkshire.
WYLRF has encouraged residents to keep protecting each other and follow the guidance to prevent the spread of infection.
Within this appeal, WYLRF shared a reminder of the new guidance. From Tuesday 30 November, face coverings will be mandatory again in shops and on public transport. There are other measures you can take including wearing face coverings in other crowded and enclosed areas, minimizing the number of people you meet in close contact and when you do, remember to try to open windows for ventilation.
If you have symptoms remember to self-isolate and get a PCR test, lateral flow tests are still readily available and free to order and pick up too.
Booster COVID-19 vaccines continue to roll out and if you haven’t had your initial vaccinations yet, you can book your vaccination on the NHS website.
Remain cautious and sensible
Kirklees Council’s Director of Public Health, Rachel Spencer-Henshall, commented: “The new Omicron variant is clearly a cause for concern and we will learn more about it over the coming days and weeks. But our best defences against it remain the same.
She reminded residents, “Wearing a face covering in busy indoor places, getting tested regularly and making sure you’ve got protection from the vaccine and boosters are all really effective at reducing the spread and severity of the virus. We can enjoy winter safely if we remain cautious and take sensible steps to reduce the risks to ourselves and our communities.”
“The government will announce further details on the new precautions shortly and we will keep Kirklees residents and businesses updated with all the latest advice.”
Covid-19 Data in Kirklees
At the end of last week, Covid-19 infection in Kirklees increased by 3 per cent compared to the previous week. However, infection rates in Kirklees, while high, remain below the national average. Over last week there were also two Covid-19 related deaths within local hospitals and people admitted into Kirklees hospitals due to Covid-19 at the end of the week being 28, which reduced from the week prior.
In Kirklees, 304, 000 residents have had their first dose of the vaccine, 276,000 of which have also had their second vaccine. Booster doses are still being rolled out this winter, with 110,000 people in Kirklees having received theirs already. You can still book your vaccination on the NHS national booking system, or attend walk-in or pop up clinics. For example, this week, there was a pop-up vaccination unit attending the University of Huddersfield campus.
To help reduce the spread, people can keep testing regularly with lateral flow tests. If you have symptoms you should get a PCR test and isolate.
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