Cumbrian COVID Cases Have ‘Positive’ Overall Reduction Health Director Says

Cases of COVID-19 have decreased in half of Cumbrian districts and increased in the others, new reports show.

Data published today for week-ending December 4 shows a continued reduction in new COVID-19 cases in the county, but with three districts seeing small increases in their infection rate and a significant slowing of the overall reduction compared to the previous week.

There were 374 new cases in Cumbria, a decrease of 29 (-7 percent) from 403 cases in previous week. Around the county:

  • South Lakeland overtook Carlisle in having the greatest number of new cases (+95 new cases);
  • Barrow-in-Furness overtook Carlisle in having the highest rate of new cases (119 new cases per 100k population);
  • Barrow’s rate was below both the national and regional average rates (England = 151 and North West = 136 new cases per 100k population respectively);
  • New cases decreased from week 48 in Allerdale, Carlisle and Copeland, but increased in Barrow, Eden and South Lakeland, with the biggest increase seen in Barrow (+63 percent);

The number of new patients admitted with COVID-19 in North Cumbria Integrated Care (NCIC) decreased from the previous week, but increased in University Hospitals of Morecambe Bay NHS Foundation Trust.

Colin Cox, Cumbria’s Director of Public Health, said: “Perhaps predictably with the ending of lockdown we haven’t seen a continuation of the rapid reduction in new cases we did in previous weeks. It’s positive that overall we’re still dropping, but it is of concern that we’re already seeing cases pick back up in some areas, particularly Barrow.

“We know from experience now how quickly the infection rate can rise, so even these modest rises should give people pause for thought. It would be extremely easy, if we don’t all take the basic steps and follow the rules, to find ourselves in a position where tighter restrictions could be imposed.

“It’s fantastic news the vaccination programme began this week, but it will take many months for enough people to be vaccinated to mean we can get back to normal. So, I’d really encourage people to keep focussed and follow the guidance carefully.”

The full COVID-19 situation report is available at www.cumbria.gov.uk/stopthespread