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Corona update

Knowsley Outbreak Management Board sees drop in Covid cases

by Gemma Melling

Knowsley’s latest Outbreak Management Board meeting took place on Thursday 16 July 2020. The Board reviewed the latest data available for the borough.

The Board considered figures and information presented by Knowsley’s Director of Public Health showing the current number of cases in Knowsley, tests undertaken, comparisons with other regions, and general trends.

Overall, the Board was satisfied that the current data raised no areas for concern and concluded that:

• The actual number of Knowsley residents with confirmed COVID-19 continues to be low.

• Data for the last 7 days showed a drop in the number of positive cases identified in the borough.

• It was noted again that the low numbers of cases mean that trends in data and statistics could appear more dramatic than the reality. For example, cases might be reported in the media as having “doubled” but potentially this could mean that the number of cases had increased from 2 to 4.

• For the last 7 days Knowsley’s positive testing rate is 1.1% (which is in line with the national positive test rate).

• Testing take-up figures for Knowsley remain consistently high which is a positive indicator and something that will continue to be encouraged.

• The community of Knowsley should be commended and thanked for their collective commitment to testing.

• Specific efforts should continue to engage with and target the 18-30 age group after data indicated a specific spike in these cases in South Liverpool.

• Targeted communications with Care Homes should be issued to remind them of their responsibilities with regard to the wearing of PPE and ensure there is no complacency as lockdown measures are lifted. It is to be noted that although best practice standards are being maintained across the sector in general, there was some evidence of a specific case where a setting that had relaxed its vigilance with regard to PPE – something which will not be tolerated.

• Specific information and advice is being shared with businesses to ensure the safety and well-being of customers and staff.

• It is crucial to continue to share general health and prevention messages– i.e. remember to social distance where possible, regularly wash your hands, work from home if you can, carry a tissue to catch coughs and sneezes, and wear a face covering on public transport, when visiting hospital settings and other public spaces such as shops.

The Knowsley Outbreak Management Board is responsible for overseeing Knowsley’s Outbreak Management Plan – you can read it on Knowsley Council’s website.

The Board is chaired by the Leader of the Council, Councillor Graham Morgan, and membership includes the Council’s Health and Social Care Cabinet Member (Councillor Sean Donnelly), Resources Cabinet Member (Councillor Jayne Aston), and Chief Executive (Mike Harden) alongside Knowsley’s Director of Public Health (Dr Sarah McNulty) and representatives from Merseyside Police and the Merseyside Fire and Rescue Service. The next meeting will take place on Thursday 23 July 2020.