Telford and Wrekin Council has issued an urgent appeal to the public to help avoid a local lockdown as cases rise across the area.
The council’s Director of Public Health urged: “Help keep Telford and Wrekin open, keep safe – and help avoid a local lockdown.”
The appeal comes following an increase in the number of positive cases in the borough that jumped from 6 cases in the week ending 30 August to 24 cases in the week ending 6 September.
Liz Noakes, Director for Public Health at Telford and Wrekin Council, said: “We all need to play our part to keep safe, stop the spread and protect our most vulnerable.
“We have seen an increase in COVID cases within the borough over the last week – with many wards in the north and south of the borough and some older members of our community affected.”
Telford and Wrekin Council says that for many of the cases they are unable to link them to specific outbreak situations.
COVID-19 spreading again as R rate increases
The R rate or reproduction number shows the rate of growth of the epidemic, that number is now above 1 with the UK government’s latest R number estimated at between 1 and 1.2, which means the epidemic is growing.
In England a study of thousands of people found cases doubling every seven to eight days.
Birmingham is the latest area to bring in new restrictions after a spike in cases and Telford and Wrekin Council want to try and avoid any such measures in the borough, Liz Noakes said: “Many areas in the West Midlands are experiencing an increase in numbers, we want to try and avoid being in similar situations that we are seeing elsewhere.
“Officers from Public Protection will be visiting licensed premises and other customer service businesses in our district centre’s throughout September to offer advice on Covid secure measures.
Get tested if you have coronavirus symptoms
The council is urging anyone with symptoms to book a test.
“It is critical that, if you have coronavirus symptoms, you isolate, dial 119 and get tested.
“The three key Coronavirus symptoms are, a high temperature, a new continuous cough, a loss or change to your sense of smell or taste.
“You should not get a test if you only have symptoms such as a sore throat or runny nose. If you have been in contact with someone who has symptoms then you should immediately self-isolate – only get a test once you develop symptoms.”
The Council have acknowledged there have been some difficulties with people getting tested which was caused by a national issue, but urged people to try again and not to turn up at a test centre without an appointment.
Liz Noakes, Director for Public Health at Telford and Wrekin Council continued saying: “People may be turned away from the Ironbridge Park and Ride if they turn up without an appointment.”
All play our part to stop the spread
Liz Noakes reiterated what people should do: “If you are contacted by NHS Test and Trace or the Council’s Health Protection team and you are a direct contact of someone with Covid, you should isolate for 14 days. This is how we will contain the spread of the virus.
“To stop the spread in the wider community, we must all keep two metres apart, wash our hands regularly for at least 20 seconds and wear a facemask. You need to do all these things when you go out to work and in your free time.
“Keep your contacts to a minimum. If you socialise, then only socialise in small groups of no more than 6 people.
“We must all play our part to stop the spread and avoid a local lockdown.”