Council thanks residents for getting tested

2 August 2021

Residents have been thanked for their response during surge testing in Winsford, Northwich and the CH1 3 and CH1 4 postcode areas of Chester.

Surge testing was launched in response to rising cases of the Delta variant of COVID-19 in those areas.

During the testing period in Winsford and Northwich, testing rates in Cheshire West and Chester rose from 308 per 100,000 on 1 June to 1,044 per 100,000 by 14 June after residents in the towns and surrounding villages were asked to come forward for a one-off PCR test.

In that time more than 452 positive cases were identified in Northwich and Winsford through testing, enabling those who tested positive to self-isolate, help with contact tracing and break chains of transmission.

Testing in the CH1 3 and CH1 4 areas of Chester saw testing rates in the borough rise from 575 per 100,000 on 19 June, peaking at 674 per 100,000 on 25 June and 606 per 100,000 by 2 July, after residents volunteered for one-off PCR tests at testing centres at Chester Cathedral, Little Roodee, Sealand Road Park and Ride, Great Boughton Park and Ride and at a pop-up test centre at Chester University.

Nearly 80 positive cases were identified in the CH1 3 and CH1 4 postcodes during the testing period which again enabled those who had tested positive to self-isolate and so help slow the rate of transmission by breaking the infection chain.

Cllr Louise Gittins, Leader of Cheshire West and Chester Council, said: "It is an ongoing battle to control the spread of this virus. And one that we all must fight.

"The virus is still very active and amongst us. Cheshire West and Chester has a current seven-day infection rate of 257per 100,000 up to 28 July. Only a couple of months ago the rate was in single figures.

"Despite this it is heartening to see the response that we had during the periods of surge testing from residents, businesses and people working in those areas.

"The rates are highest in the 10-29 age range and we are now seeing more people (currently over 70 admissions) requiring treatment for COVID in our local hospitals.

"So much good work has been done and so I ask everyone to continue with all the good practices that have helped to reduce the spread of the virus and have protected our communities and loved ones since this horrible virus arrived. Please get vaccinated as soon as you can and continue to test.

"Above all please be kind, considerate and respectful of the health of others."

Anyone who develops symptoms of COVID-19 should self-isolate immediately and book a PCR test by visiting: www.gov.uk/get-coronavirus-test or calling: 119.

COVID-19 symptoms often start with a new continuous cough, high temperature and a loss or change in your sense of smell or taste. The Council is also urging people with a wider range of symptoms to book a PCR test as a precaution.

These can include shortness of breath, muscle or body aches, fatigue, sore throat, headache, nasal congestion or runny nose, diarrhoea, nausea or vomiting. However, it is important to remember that these are very common symptoms, and most people who have these symptoms will not have COVID-19. If you only have these symptoms there is no need to self-isolate unless you test positive for COVID-19.

For information on self-isolation support, including help with money, visit: www.cheshirewestandchester.gov.uk/selfisolationsupport or call the Council's COVID-19 helpline on: 0300 123 7031.

COVID-19 vaccination appointments are now available to anyone aged 18 or over. To book visit: www.nhs.uk/covid-vaccination or call: 119.

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