Coronavirus infection rates in Leicester have this week hit their highest levels of the whole pandemic.
Today the seven-day incidence rate in the city reached 570 cases per 100,000 people eclipsing the 529.9 cases per 100,000 during the November spike in infections.
The current infection rate is nearly four times the level that pushed the city into the UK’s first local lockdown nearly 200 days ago.
The city’s public health officials have again urged people to stick to the national lockdown rules to try to keep the virus under control while the vaccine is being rolled out.
They are urging people to abide by the ‘Stay at Home’ rules and only go out on essential trips or for limited exercise as well reminding them not to mix with people outside their households.
Officials have also warned that the city’s hospitals are under increasing pressure treating people suffering from the virus.
More than 2,000 people in the city have tested positive for Covid-19 in the last seven days.
Latest Government figures (Tues) show there are 324 people with Covid-19 being cared for at the Leicester Royal Infirmary, Glenfield and General hospital with 31 of those patients on ventilation.
The Department of Health and Social Care says 20 people in the city have this week died of Covid-19.
Leicester City Council’s director of public health professor Ivan Browne: “We have seen a really big increase in our infection rates, certainly post Christmas, and in terms of the pandemic as a whole this is the most critical time we have faced in terms of the numbers, the actions and the fragility of the system.
“It’s important we keep on top of this and comply with the rules.
“I know we have been through a lot in this city and we have been locked down a lot longer than anybody else but this is the really critical time for us.
“The difference this time is there is hope around where we are headed with the vaccine but we cannot take our eye off the ball in terms of the key things we do now.”
“We must all stay at home except for specific reasons, such as essential shopping, exercise or work if you absolutely cannot work from home.
People have been reminded to:
Stay two metres apart from anyone they do not live with.
Wash or sanitise their hands regularly.
Wear a face covering on buses, in shops and in any space where distancing is difficult.
Book a test and self-isolate as soon as they get symptoms.
If they test positive, continue to stay at home for at least 10 days and until they feel better.