Information published by Public Health England today has confirmed that the ‘R rate’ (the rate of transmission for Covid-19) in the North West has increased to >1.01 – the highest rate in England.
This latest data reaffirms the North West’s position as one of the areas most impacted by the Coronavirus.
With the transmission rate now above 1, it could mean that cases of the virus in the North West may begin to rise again. This has prompted local leaders to once again urge residents in the region to continue to stay at home wherever possible.
Cllr Sean Donnelly, Knowsley Council’s Cabinet Member for Health and Social Care, said: “While infections and deaths are reducing, we can see that the R rate has increased here and indeed across the country. We have been repeatedly told by Government that we need to keep our transmission rate under 1 and so understandably it does cause concern for me that we have just tipped over that point.
“Whilst I wouldn’t want residents to panic I do want people to take this threat seriously. We must continue to proceed with caution and limit our contact with other people. Our residents have already made so many sacrifices but we have to remain responsible if we want to avoid cases starting to increase again.”
“The message is simple here, we can’t afford to relax the lockdown now. Please continue to stay at home as much as you can. If you do go out, observe social distancing at all times and be stringent with hygiene, especially hand washing.”
The North West is continuing to see a higher level of confirmed cases and deaths than other parts of the country as well as the R rating being higher than other areas.
Everyone is being reminded of the need to maintain strict social distancing measures, practice regular and thorough hand washing with soap and hot water, stay at home as much as possible and if you do develop any symptoms, self-isolate and arrange for a test through nhs.uk/coronavirus.