Council publishes latest COVID-19 data for the district
Wakefield Council has published the latest COVID-19 data for the district to keep residents up to date.
The figures show that for the latest set of weekly data (between 30 December and 5 January) Wakefield's positive case rate has increased from the previous week – from 219.1 to 287.4 positive cases (per 100,000 population).
The previous week's figure of 176.6 positive cases was revised during the week due to ongoing Public Health England data validation processes.
Cllr Faith Heptinstall, Wakefield Council's Cabinet Member for Adults, Health and Wellbeing, said: "The infection rate in the district is continuing to increase and so it is absolutely crucial for everyone to act now and follow the important guidance and restrictions currently in place.
"We now know that the new variant is present in communities in the region and it spreads at a much faster pace. We must all play our part and do everything we can to avoid the infection rate increasing rapidly, if we don't, we will see more hospital admissions and our local NHS services risk being overwhelmed, and inevitably, and sadly, more lives will be lost."
There are currently 184 COVID-19 patients being cared for by The Mid Yorkshire Hospitals NHS Trust, compared to 181 the previous week.
Jo Webster, Chief Officer at NHS Wakefield Clinical Commissioning Group, said: "It is really important that we all continue to follow the guidance, isolate immediately if you develop symptoms and choose the right local service if you need healthcare. If you're not sure which service to use and it's not a life-threatening emergency, call NHS111 or visit NHS online. NHS111 will make sure you get the care you need, in the most appropriate place for your needs.
"By choosing the right service in Wakefield you will get the right treatment in the most appropriate place and avoid an unnecessarily long wait to be seen. You will also be ensuring that local services can operate as effectively as possible and are available for the most critically ill people when they need them."
Anna Hartley, Director of Public Health
Anna Hartley, Director of Public Health for the Wakefield district, said: "We are continuing to see an increase in cases across the district and sadly there were 23 deaths from Covid-19 last week. These are all incalculable losses to the families, friends, and colleagues of those who have died.
"We are aware that the new variant is now present in West Yorkshire and so we must all take immediate action to protect ourselves and others from the very real threat of COVID-19. Although we understand the new strain does not affect people differently, it is spreading at a much faster rate which will risk our local health services being overwhelmed if we don't do all we can to limit the spread.
"We must all play our part, pull together and follow the national restrictions to help slow the spread and save lives."
Wakefield Council is continuing to monitor the COVID-19 situation across the district with effective monitoring to map relevant data and spot trends, which acts as an early warning system.
Working with partners, Wakefield Council has been actively supporting the businesses and communities affected by the previous outbreaks to limit any spread, as well as working closely with partners and local communities to try and ensure everyone knows the symptoms and how to access testing.
A local testing offer for COVID-19 has opened in Wakefield, to work alongside and to enhance the national programme.
Residents in the district who suspect they have symptoms of the virus can now access tests via a home delivery service but people are urged to try the national system first.
The local testing service is available from Monday to Friday and bookings for appointments can be made at www.nhs.uk/ask-for-a-coronavirus-test or by calling 01924 224497.
Anyone displaying coronavirus symptoms is urged to self-isolate immediately and get a test by accessing local testing or by visiting nhs.uk/coronavirus or calling 119.
Anna Hartley added: "Please act now - isolate and get tested if you have any symptoms. If you do not have any of the symptoms of coronavirus - of a high temperature, a new continuous cough or loss of taste or smell - please do not get a test as we need to make sure tests are readily available for those who really need them."
The dashboard published today (Monday 11 January) shows the available data up to 5 January.
The dashboard and briefing can be found at http://www.wakefield.gov.uk/about-the-council/coronavirus-information/covid-19-weekly-data