Thanks for sticking to lockdown disciplines – but we must keep up the good work

People in Oxfordshire are being encouraged to keep up the lockdown disciplines that have begun to start driving COVID cases down but remain at much higher levels than before Christmas, with hospitalisations and deaths still on the rise.

Thanks for sticking to lockdown disciplines – but we must keep up the good work

For the week ending 15 January, there were 392.1 cases per 100,000 people in Oxfordshire compared to 567.2 the week before. However, this is still four times higher than figure of 83.7 per 100,000 on 4 December. The NHS in Oxfordshire is currently caring for twice the number of COVID-19 patients than at the peak of the first wave in spring 2020.

Oxford Health NHS Foundation Trust’s community hospitals are also coping with twice the number of COVID-19 patients and cases than in wave one.

Ansaf Azhar, Oxfordshire County Council’s Director for Public Health, said: “We’d like to reassure people that what they have been doing in abiding by lockdown rules is starting to have an effect. But we are at the start of this task, not the end and we can’t afford to be complacent. The significant rise in hospitalisations clearly demonstrates the gravity of the situation, and the pressure on our healthcare system remains intense.

“We thank people for sticking to the rules since lockdown was reintroduced, but we need to continue in this vein over the weeks ahead – to give the vaccination programme the very best foundation to do its job. If people stop following the rules and forget about those simple steps of keeping your distance, washing your hands and wearing a face mask, we will undoubtedly see rises again.

“Almost twelve months of dealing with COVID-19 tells us one thing very clearly, this virus relies on human contact to spread. The second we relax, COVID-19 comes back with a bang.

“Not giving the virus the opportunity to spread remains the best thing individuals, families and work colleagues can do to allow the vaccine the best chance to fight COVID-19. Please continue to do your bit so that collectively we can stop the spread.

“I would also remind people to get tested if they are showing symptoms and make sure you self-isolate if that test comes back as a positive. Testing is another weapon in our armoury against this formidable opponent.”

Cases in Oxfordshire

With the total number of cases in Oxfordshire standing at 392.1 per 100,000 of the population, the number of cases per district is listed below.

Cherwell 532.2 per 100,000

Oxford 533.9 per 100,000

South Oxfordshire 297.8 per 100,000

Vale of White Horse 281.6 per 100,000

West Oxfordshire 263 per 100,000

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Published: 20 January 2021