Posted: 09.06.21 at 22:31 by By Amy Orton, Local Democracy Reporter for Leicestershire
North West Leicestershire currently has the lowest seven-day Covid infection rate in the county.
The district currently has just 18.3 cases per 100,000 of the population - with 19 reported cases over the past week.
It contrasts strongly with neighbouring Charnwood which, an area highlighted by public health bosses as an area of concern, which recorded 40 cases over the last 24 hours.
The area now has a seven day infection rate of 68.3 cases per 100,000 - with 127 new cases over the past week.
Blaby is also worrying Leicestershire health bosses while the city of Leicester’s rate also remains high.
North West Leicestershire is, however, bucking the trend despite being an area of concern itself earlier this year - with the rate the highest in the country at one stage.
The highest number of new Covid cases since March have been added to records across the city and county today (Wednesday).
In total there were 159 new infections identified - 81 in Leicester and 78 spread across Leicestershire.
The number of new cases is also increasing nationally, Leicester and Leicestershire have been accounting for just over 100 cases a day of late - the number added to local totals is similar to those seen before any lockdown measures were relaxed.
The latest seven-day infection rates, area by area, are:
• Leicester: 98.2 cases per 100,000 (348 cases in the last seven days)
• Blaby: 54.2 cases per 100,000 (55)
• Charnwood: 68.3 cases per 100,000 (127)
• Harborough: 34.1 cases per 100,000 (32)
• Hinckley and Bosworth: 32.7 cases per 100,000 (37)
• Melton: 37.1 cases per 100,000 (19)
• North West Leicestershire: 18.3 cases per 100,000 (19)
• Oadby and Wigston: 43.8 cases per 100,000 (25)
The new cases are one of the key numbers that will be considered when the Government makes a decision on whether restrictions can be lifted on June 21 - dubbed Freedom Day.
The number of vaccinations is another factor that will be looked at - last week the one million doses milestone was reached in Leicestershire.
Hospitalisations will also be taken into account - according to gov.uk’s daily dashboard, the number of patients in city hospitals who have tested positive, currently remains at 19.
Infection rates will also make up part of the Government’s thinking in whether rules and restrictions should be relaxed or scrapped all together.
Public health officials in Leicestershire have reiterated a ‘get tested’ message.
People are being encouraged to get tested for the virus following a rise in positive cases across the county, particularly among younger people.
Although cases are on the rise across most parts of Leicestershire, the county council’s director of public health says he has ‘real concerns’ about the Charnwood and Blaby districts.
Mike Sandys said: “There’s been a step increase in numbers across Leicestershire with Covid cases overall rising by around 60 per cent in the past seven days, so the rate of increase has slowed a little but the national rate is up by around 50 per cent too.
“Charnwood and Blaby are the districts causing me the most concern – and there appears to be two main factors behind this.
“There’s a general increase across the county as mixing has increased and at a time when the Delta variant was beginning to take a hold.
“We’re also aware of some specific issues related to school-age parties and gatherings.”
Mr Sandys said it was still vital for people to take a cautious approach, referring particularly to the forthcoming European football championships which start later this week.
Councillor Louise Richardson, county council cabinet member for health, said: “Testing is how we will avoid a further increase in the rates. If you have symptoms, you must book a test.
"Also, we’d encourage people to continue taking lateral flow tests which also brings reassurance to others. To protect yourself and others, keep two metres apart, wear a mask to help to reduce the spread of the virus and regularly wash your hands.”
Vaccinations are being offered to people who are eligible for the vaccine in line with national guidelines.
All adults aged 25 to 29 in England who have not yet had a Covid vaccine are now able to book their first dose.
To stop the spread of coronavirus, people are urged to:
• Get tested if you have symptoms and isolate – book a test HERE.
• Get vaccinated – and in particular, make sure you have your second dose. Find out more HERE.