NEW STRAIN OF COVID-19 NOW ACCOUNTS FOR 90% OF ISLAND CASES

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90% of COVID-19 cases on the Isle of Wight are now through the new strain of the virus.

The variant, which started in Kent and has worked its way across the South, has seen coronavirus levels rocket, moving the Island from one of the safest areas to having one of the highest case rates in the UK in just a few days.

Warnings are being issued once again by members of the Isle of Wight Council for the public to follow the rules and do exactly what the government is asking of people.

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Cabinet member for the COVID recovery, Cllr Stuart Hutchinson, said they had noticed people putting their own interpretation on the rules, to “suit what they want to do”.

The council’s chief executive, John Metcalfe said it has been particularly challenging for people to keep up with the change of pace as the Island jumped from Tier 1 to Tier 4 and now into the national lockdown. He said:

“Recent data published by the government would seem to indicate 90 per cent cases on the Island are down to the new variant.

“We know it is 70 per cent more transmissible and we know about one in three people with Covid may have no symptoms, so they may not know they have got it — which I think is really important as to how people behave.

“It is so contagious, it is so virulent, even if you have not got it you almost need to act as if you have and any one you come into contact with act as if they have got it.

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“Make sure you give them lots of space, wear face coverings and have good hand hygiene.”

Mr Metcalfe said we are only just starting to see the effect of people mixing over Christmas, adding even further pressure to public bodies, with the effect of mixing over New Years yet to come, despite gatherings not being permitted.

A new mobile testing unit has been set up providing capacity to do 300 tests a week, with Mr Metcalfe saying there should not be a difficulty for people to get a test and urged anyone with symptoms, no matter how slight, to self-isolate and get one.

As the virus spreads through the community, Mr Metcalfe said all parts of the public sector as well as independent health and care providers are under considerable pressure but the only way the virus is going to get under control is through the behaviours of people. He said:

“Hopefully we will get the Island back to the good position we were in right up until the end of November and I am very confident we will do that as people were really compliant up until that particular point. We have just been knocked sideways by this new variant.”

The Island’s current 7-day rate (as of Wednesday) stands at 1,115.4 cases per 100,000 people, with now more than 4,400 cases recorded – nearly 2,000 of those in January alone.

The views/opinions expressed in these comments are solely those of the author and do not represent those of Island Echo. House rules on commenting must be followed at all times.
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Liz
Liz
6 days ago

Let’s thank council..seely n greedy ferry for our plight 1000% Isle of man are pretty normal there because strict borders. A pic I’d and paperwork too prove who needs too come n go was needed. YES Stewart the big influx of high tier travlers just before other lockdowns helped tremendously! We done good up till then no denying.dont you dare blame us .yes there are a minority who dont care but allowing all people here has f us right up now I’m dam annoyed and now the sheep fear is rife even moreso. Media sensationalise with there constant bs. Just… Read more »

Susan Merchant
Susan Merchant
Reply to  Liz
6 days ago

Many people left the island to go shopping on the main land and in addition I have seen many images on FB of people enjoying a pint or two whist in Tier 1 and a lack of social distance, many supermarkets with people shopping without face mask or incorrectly worn,

Chad_Mullun
Chad_Mullun
6 days ago

We best hope that all are fully vaccinated before a new ‘strain’ is on the scene which is then perhaps ‘current vaccine’ resistant. Meaning going through all this like Ground-Hog day, again and again. Also all those who have and gotten over this current version of CV, are now less likely to be so careful in habits, knowing that they are likely ‘immune’ for a while at least. This will then mean more cases as obviously any carelessness still means they can ‘pass on’ the virus, even if not then being harmed themselves. We need the vaccine asap, before a… Read more »

Sunnydaze
Sunnydaze
6 days ago

Grant shapps mp I feel is to blame for what’s happening in our country…..he had the responsibility to cancel flights… into the uk ….as Australia & New Zealand did but did nothing and continues to…..

Mr Mark
Mr Mark
Reply to  Sunnydaze
6 days ago

Regretfully even IF the UK had banned flights, we get boatloads float across daily into the UK, and then, as not supposed to be here, work in food industries etc, even if ill with CV, as only income and thus spread this to us all.

Sunnydaze
Sunnydaze
Reply to  Mr Mark
6 days ago

Couldn’t agree more

JOB
JOB
Reply to  Sunnydaze
5 days ago

Grant Shapps today on TV with his self promotional poster and book in the background ,shameful.

Real Islander
Real Islander
6 days ago

Obey our rules or suffer: The Johnson government are now psychological abusers who seek to blame citizens for their destruction of our civil liberties. Resist and disobey tyranny.

D J
D J
Reply to  Real Islander
6 days ago

NUMB NUT’S

SRichards
SRichards
Reply to  D J
6 days ago

Brainwashed

SRichards
SRichards
Reply to  Real Islander
6 days ago

Totally agree the new strain is obviously the normal flu that we get this time of year always have and always will,yet the brainwashed prefer to believe the corrupt government and mainstream media and blindly refuse to explore other avenues of information that are easily sourced which proves the opposite

Susan
Susan
Reply to  SRichards
6 days ago

Do you work at St Marys? Are you a doctor? you are so scared you are telling yourself this rubbish to convince yourself you are safe ; you are not. I do work there and I can tell you now – you are so wrong and also dangerously paranoid.

red squirrel
red squirrel
Reply to  Susan
5 days ago

Totally agree with you Susan, unfortuneatly there are a few TROLLS on here and that is one of them.
Thank you for what you do at St Marys.

Just me
Just me
Reply to  Susan
5 days ago

I too work on front line at at Mary’s
And challenge anyone who has this ridiculous notion that this is not a real plaque to come up and see the dozens of people struggling for their life
Thankyou Susan for putting these sad non believers right
Everyone please take care

Mr justice
Mr justice
Reply to  Real Islander
4 days ago

Real islander,please dont waste your time with these fools. You and I and a few more that get on here,have worked out what is coming. You like me have tried, its to late . Sit back and watch the sheep run round panicking, when it all is put in place. Tc.

YIGAF
YIGAF
6 days ago

Too late to do anything now – the damage has been done. Thanks for nothing Bob Seely and the Isle of Wight Council for allowing all and sundry to come en masses to the Island . Money before health has done so much damage to all inhabitants here. So many people voiced their fears but were dismissed . Well here we are now suffering. Stay safe everybody out there.

Sheila Allchorn
Sheila Allchorn
Reply to  YIGAF
6 days ago

agree entirely with your comments

Just me
Just me
Reply to  Sheila Allchorn
6 days ago

We can all look back and blame but there is little that can be gained from it What needs to happen is we all need to follow the rules in place I still see many people without masks and not distancing My local shop have given up challenging local people about not wearing masks only to be faced with abuse and threats No one s exempt from this awful virus If you don’t believe me just ask anyone working at the hospital Laying out 30 year old people who have died from COVID is something none should have to do… Read more »

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