AS Solihull enters the second full week of the new national restrictions the Council’s Director of Public Health, Ruth Tennant, is encouraging everyone to keep doing the right things to keep Covid at bay.
In the last week local Covid numbers have increased by 14 per cent, with 533 new cases in Solihull in the latest week.
The current rate is 272 cases per 100,000 people while the average in England is 167.
Back in September, when additional restrictions came into play in Solihull rates were 64 per 100,000.
“Sadly four Solihull residents died from Covid last week and we’re really concerned by the 15 per cent increase in cases in the over 65s who are most likely to be hit hardest by the virus.
“Our hotspots for infection and transmission of the virus are unsurprisingly our more densely populated areas, but all parts of the borough are affected.
“Once again, the virus is having a huge impact on our NHS.
“There has been a big increase in patients admitted to University Hospitals Birmingham with Covid.
“Unfortunately, we are now seeing significant numbers who need intensive care. Although we have learned more about how to treat patients with Covid it is still a very serious and in some cases deadly illness.
“The more you go out and the more you do, even if it’s within the lockdown rules, the more opportunities you create for the virus to spread.
“People can be infectious before they have symptoms so if you’re out and about, you’re at risk.
“The other way we can stop the spread is to stay at home if you have symptoms.
“Get tested and self-isolate. Self-isolation stops the virus in its tracks. We will contact you to see if you need any support, help you to understand the self-isolation rules and to check if you’re eligible for the £500 support which is available to people on low incomes.
“Our recent ‘drop and collect’ pilot in Chelmsley Wood has now finished. We tested over 1,000 people, taking tests from door to door with help from national and local volunteers. The testing will help us to understand how the virus is spreading and we also heard from lots of residents about the impact of COVID on them and what they think of testing.
“We would like to thank everyone who was involved: it will all help to improve how we tackle this virus. There are big changes coming through around testing including new rapid testing and we’ll be looking at how these might be used locally.”
The borough’s Mobile Testing Unit in Monkspath Hall Road car park will remain open until November 30.
Anyone with Covid-19 symptoms: a high temperature, a new continuous cough or a loss or change to their ense of smell or taste, can book a test with the national NHS booking system or call 119. Do not turn up without a booking.