Image Description: A shot of Christ Church with a rainbow.
Oxford City Council has reported that for the week ending 22 January, there were 294.7 cases per 100,000 people in Oxfordshire. This is a drop from 399.5 the week before but still three times higher than the figures reported at the start of December last year.
Oxford City council highlighted that although there has been a drop in case numbers there is still “tremendous pressure” on hospitals. The council also highlighted that; “Case rates in the over 60s remain of particular concern”.
Louise Upton, a Councillor and cabinet member for Safer, Healthy Oxford, said:
“The latest covid figures for Oxford are reducing, but are still higher than when we went into lockdown. It’s really important that everyone, even those who have had the vaccine, sticks to the lockdown rules to keep the figures falling. The government told us last night that lockdown will continue until at least March 8th. I know this isn’t easy, but every day you stay at home and don’t mix, you’re helping take the pressure off our NHS and you are saving lives.”
Upton went on to praise the Oxford community thanking volunteer groups and families who have helped organise food parcels and other means of support.
“The Council is also here to support, so if you need help with financial hardship, lockdown loneliness, or getting essential supplies, please ask for help”.
“Together we can get through this”.
Val Messenger, Oxfordshire County Council’s Deputy Director for Public Health, said:
“This lockdown is slowly starting to have a positive effect on our rates. However, the rates are falling back at a much slower rate than they rose, and they are much higher than they were back in December. The situation in our hospitals also remains severe and our healthcare staff are under immense pressure.”
Messenger also highlighted the success of the vaccination program stating that Oxford Council “are on track on schedule to achieve the government target of the top four priority groups being vaccinated by mid-February”.
“As we approach 12 months of restrictions, it’s really important that we do not give up now. Everyone is doing so well, but we need to continue to do our bit so that together we can stop the spread. The rapid transmission of the highly infectious new variant of COVID-19, plus the risks of other variants, makes it even more vital that we don’t relax now – we could end up back at square one, very quickly, if we do. Please, keep going”.
Image Credit: Iona Shen