* There has been a rise in infections everywhere, we will continue to see a rise in positive cases up to 19th July when a decision will be taken by Government on the next stage.
* Workplaces and schools are the most common places for outbreaks.
* Hospital COVID numbers are down but the R rate is now 1.3 to 1.7 across the South West.
* Somerset started with a very low number of positives but once schools break up for the summer holidays, people will travel and there will be more opportunity for the virus to spread.
* The ambulance service is seeing sustained demand and the NHS is very busy with non-COVID admissions.
* It’s important to get the message across that the pandemic does not end on 19th July (or any other date). It will be essential to continue with the infection control measures, even when they are no longer mandatory.
* Public Health will continue to deal with outbreaks and need to get a grip on outbreaks and clusters quickly as the new variant has greater transmission rates.
* The coming winter will be a concern, with winter flu cases & vaccinations, as well as need for booster COVID vaccinations.
Vaccination Update * Somerset is doing well on vaccine numbers, with good support from local authorities and volunteers. It is like a race of vaccination against virus. * 85% of adults have had their first dose; 75% of adults have had their second dose. People with learning disabilities are 90% vaccinated. * Over 18s can now have their first dose; over 40s can now have their second dose. Drop-in weekends have had a huge response, and new sites are being added. * National targets are for all adults to have had first dose by 19th July (on track to achieve this); second dose by October. * Over 18s can book vaccination here: https://www.nhs.uk/.../coro.../book-coronavirus-vaccination/
Thanks to Somerset County Council Public Health for the slides and information provided at the COVID Engagement Board on 02.07.21