Tag: coronavirus

Covid Watch 173: Boosters extended as Omicron cases fall rapidly in Shropshire

Some good news at last, Omicron cases are falling rapidly across Shropshire and across most of the country. Here in Shropshire, the rate of infection has fallen by around 44% in the last seven days. Rates remain very high but the health impacts of Omicron are proving less than Delta. Eight in 100 people in Shropshire have tested positive for Covid-19 in the last seven days, down from a peak of 18 in 100 ten days ago. In Telford & Wrekin 12 people in 100 tested positive, down from 20 in 100. In Ludlow, 15 in 100 people tested positive in the week to 9 January. It’s all Omicron now. The variant, which emerged in mid-November, formed an estimated 99% of the cases in Shropshire and 96% of cases in England in the seven days to New Year’s Day. The good news is that it looks like Omicron cases are falling as quickly as they grew. That’s very different so far from Delta, which proved to be a rollercoaster ride with cases shooting up and down. That could still happen with Omicron but the high level of vaccination makes it less likely. We are however unlikely to come out of…

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Covid Watch 172: If you are not vaccinated or seeking another dose, this weekend is your chance

Have you been vaccinated yet? Have you had all three doses? If not, there are opportunities in Ludlow and South Shropshire over this weekend to walk into a clinic and get your first jab, second jab or your third. Sessions are 8am to 11am at Ludlow Hospital today (Saturday) and 9am to 12pm tomorrow at Ludlow Mascall Centre. People do not need to be registered with a GP, have proof of address, immigration status, ID or an NHS number. A few personal details will be taken to record who has been vaccinated. More than one in ten people aged 12 or over in Shropshire have yet to receive any a vaccination, more than 32,000 people (11%). In Ludlow, nine per cent have not had any jabs. Covid rates are at the highest level to date. Nearly 30 cases a day were diagnosed in Ludlow in the week up to New Year’s Day at testing centres. There will have been many other people who haven’t known they are positive. Others will have had positive lateral flow tests but did not obtain a PCR test and therefore are not recorded.  

Covid Watch 171: Omicron cases surge across Shropshire – don’t panic but be cautious

In the last days of 2021, infection rates soared nationally and locally. The cause was the new Omicron variant first reported in November. Omicron seems to be milder, especially among those who have been vaccinated. Omicron was estimated to have been responsible for four in five cases across England and in Shropshire in the week to Boxing Day and for two-thirds of the cases in Telford & Wrekin. In the last few days cases have continued to surge. Infection rates are the highest we have seen during the pandemic. Fourteen in 100 people in Shropshire have tested positive in the last week. That is not a cause for panic but it is a reason for caution. There are 22 patients in the Royal Shrewsbury and Princes Royal Hospitals with Covid, a fifth of the number a year ago, reflecting the high level of vaccination and the lower health impacts of Omicron compared to earlier variants.

Covid Watch 172: Ludlow drop-in vaccination clinics to help shop workers

Caron Morton GP at Station Drive Surgery says that some shop workers, who are working flat out in the build up to Christmas, are finding it difficult to get to vaccination clinics. To help retail workers, Dr Morton says: “We are running drop-in clinics in Ludlow next Tuesday, 21 December and the following Wednesday 29 December. These will be open from 5pm to 8pm at Station Drive Surgery and there is no need to book. The sessions are timed to allow workers to come after work. But I would advise people to come early and be prepared for a short wait outside. “These drop in sessions are not just for booster doses. First or second jabs can be given where needed. We aim to deliver 500 doses across the two sessions.”

Covid Watch 171: GPs boosting jab delivery in south west Shropshire to meet New Year target

On Sunday, Boris Johnson announced that all adults who have not yet had a booster jab will be offered a jab before the New Year. Here in Ludlow, GPs have been working flat out to ramp up the booster programme, which was already well underway. There will be additional booster clinics in Ludlow run by Portcullis and Station Drive surgeries on Thursday, Saturday and Sunday offering around 3,800 booster jabs. Patients who are eligible are being contacted by text and by phone. As always, please don’t ring your surgery to chase up your appointment. That would put additional pressure on our hard pressed receptionists who need to deal with the day-to-day needs of the practice’s patients. With GPs confident that a third dose can be offered to all adults in south west Shropshire before the New Year, there is no need to travel long distances to queue for a third jab, unless of course you need it urgently.

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