Let's continue to be Covid-kind and bear others in mindCoronavirus (COVID-19)
11 February 2022
“Let’s commit to continue to be COVID kind, bear others in mind and take responsibility for ourselves and others.” - that’s this week’s message from Northamptonshire’s Director of Public Health as a further 8,024 residents test positive amid government plans to lift self-isolation rules in the coming weeks.
Government's message on self-isolation requirements
On Wednesday, the Prime Minister Boris Johnson indicated that the legal duty to self-isolate will be lifted later this month. That will mean people will no longer legally be obliged to stay home after a positive Coronavirus test.
At Prime Minister’s Questions, he said: “It is my intention to return on the first day after the half-term recess [21 February] to present our strategy for living with COVID-19.
“Provided the current encouraging trends in the data continue, it is my expectation that we will be able to end the last domestic restrictions – including the legal requirement to self-isolate if you test positive – a full month early.”
Northamptonshire’s Public Health team acknowledge this has some caused anxiety in residents, particularly those who may be either clinically vulnerable or experiencing poor mental health.
As we all learn to live safely with the reality that COVID-19 will be a part of our daily lives from now on it is vital that residents remember that vulnerabilities are not always visible. Case numbers have decreased by 20% this week but remain high. The county’s team is keen to remind residents of the importance of continuing to be COVID cautious and carrying out protective measures in their daily activities to look after the health of themselves and those around them.Lucy Wightman - Joint Director of Public Health, North and West Northamptonshire Councils
The Omicron variant continues to be virulent in the county and despite the latest hospital data showing a 20.7% decrease on the previous week’s number occupying hospital beds in Northamptonshire, hospitalisation is still a risk.
There are likely to be many people who are feeling anxious about changes, particularly those who are clinically extremely vulnerable and those who struggle with their mental health. The vaccination is still the best way to go – it’s not too late. COVID-19 can be less serious if you are protected which is why the vaccinations are so important.
Northamptonshire’s rates remain concerningly high and there are still many people falling seriously ill with the virus. It’s vitally important that we remain cautious and play our part to reduce the spread of the virus.
Booking a booster dose
The Public Health team would also like to remind residents that 16 and 17 year olds can now book a booster dose online. Parents and guardians of people at higher risk of severe illness from COVID-19 between 12 to 15 years old, or those living with people at higher risk, will also be contacted to book a booster.
Also, please remember that the rules have now changed and you can stop self-isolating at the start of day 6 if you get 2 negative rapid lateral flow test results on days 5 and 6 and do not have a temperature. Tests must be at least 24 hours apart. If either test is positive, wait 24 hours before testing again.
Covid-19 in the county this week
An analysis of the county’s recent coronavirus cases and rates over the period 31 January to 6 February 2022, shows:
- 8,024 residents tested positive for COVID-19, of which 852 were reinfection cases. ‘Reinfections’ are a new measurement now appearing in the county’s weekly data surveillance report and are defined as, ‘an infection of COVID- 19 from any of the variants after 90 days from the date of the last positive test.’
- Northamptonshire’s infection rate per 100,000 population is 1233.8. West Northamptonshire’s rate per 100,000 population is 1332.9 - both rates are significantly higher than the national average (910.1)
- The highest rates locally are Northampton (1431.8) and Kettering (1241)
- 16 people died in Northamptonshire within 28 days of a positive test
- Overall, more women than men tested positive for COVID-19 in the last 28 days
- The age group with the most positive cases was 10-19-year-olds
- 30–39-year-olds also had high numbers of positive cases in both males and females with a greater number of females in this age range testing positive
View the weekly Covid-19 Surveillance Report