Dorset Council says it’s getting ready for any further Covid increase as cases double in a week

The leader of Dorset Council says it’s “reinvigorating” its multi-agency arrangements to tackle the coronavirus pandemic, as the number of COVID-19 cases double in a week in the Dorset Council area.

Speaking at the Dorset Council full council meeting on Thursday 15th October 2020, Councillor Spencer Flower explained that the role of the Local Resilience Forum Gold Network, which guided Dorset’s emergency response to Covid was still important. He said:

“We are reinvigorating our gold arrangements so that we are ready and able to deal with any further increase in the problem.”

From March 2020, Dorset’s Local Resilience Forum Gold Network was the central body analysing the problems and issuing the instructions about what actions to take to cope with the pandemic, like setting up the council’s coronavirus helpline and distributing food to people who were shielding.

Leader of Dorset Council, Spencer Flower
Dorset Council

Leader of Dorset Council, Councillor Spencer Flower

Doubling in the number of confirmed cases of COVID-19

This comes as Public Health Dorset reported a doubling in the number of confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the Dorset Council area in the past week.

From 28th September to 4th October 2020 there were 93 cases but from 4th to 10th October 2020 there were 182. For Swanage, the number of reported cases was eight from 5th to 11th October 2020.

Number of COVID-19 cases in the Dorset Council area

4th to 10th October 2020 – 182 cases
28th September to 4th October 2020 – 93 cases
22nd to 28th September 2020 – 29 cases

In its weekly bulletin Public Health Dorset also reported:

“We have seen a few hospital admissions throughout the last month across the county, but this has started to increase over the last week. This is to be expected given the increase in case numbers we are now seeing.”

Across the south west of England, as of Thursday 15th October 2020, there were 124 coronavirus patients in hospital, with 16 of them on a ventilator.

This compares to Thursday 8th October 2020, when there were 66 coronavirus patients in hospital, with six of them on a ventilator. This is still the lowest number in an English region.

Director of Public Health Dorset, Sam Crowe
Public Health Dorset

Director of Public Health Dorset, Sam Crowe

“Act now to avoid a further spike in cases”

Director of Public Health Dorset, Sam Crowe issued a stark warning:

“Unfortunately we are seeing instances where people are clearly not following the rules. Not only does that risk spreading Covid but it has huge consequences for the families that are caught up in a situation where we’ve had a positive case requiring large numbers of children or people in workplaces to self-isolate because social distancing isn’t being maintained.

“So please, we must act now to avoid a further spike in cases and to prevent a local lockdown.”

Leader of Dorset Council, Councillor Spencer Flower added:

“The trend is concerning and a reminder that we all need to be vigilant. I’d like to thank everyone for their hard work so far in limiting this virus – it is vital that we keep up the basic measures at all times; social distancing, hand washing, self-isolation. (This is) to prevent a further increase in cases and tighter restrictions – we don’t want tighter restrictions.”

Watch Director of Public Health Dorset, Sam Crowe give his latest update on the situation in Dorset

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