London, September 17
Nearly 2 million folks within the north east England areas of Northumberland, Newcastle, Sunderland, North and South Tyneside, Gateshead and County Durham are being put beneath stricter motion restrictions amid a spike in COVID-19 circumstances.
UK Health Secretary Matt Hancock instructed the House of Commons that the choice, taken in session with native leaders, got here as Sunderland confirmed a coronavirus an infection charge of 103 circumstances per 100,000 folks, whereas in South Tyneside Gateshead and Newcastle the figures are all above 70.
The more durable lockdown measures for the area will contain a ban on public gatherings and mingling between completely different households.
“After seeing cases in the north east rise to a concerning level, local authorities requested support for tighter restrictions and we have taken swift action to accept their recommendations,” the minister stated.
“We do not take these decisions lightly but I know the people of the North East will work together and break the chains of transmission. I urge those from affected areas: please, get a test if you are symptomatic, stay at home if you are required to self-isolate, and think: hands, face, space. This is the only way for us to return to a more normal way of life and avoid further restrictions,” he stated.
Under the brand new guidelines which are available in power from Friday, residents should not socialise with different folks outdoors of their very own households or assist bubble in personal houses and gardens.
Hospitality for food and drinks can be restricted to desk service solely; and late evening restriction of working hours can be launched, with leisure and leisure venues required to stay closed between 10 pm to five am.
Other curbs embrace no socialising with folks outdoors households in any respect public venues; solely to make use of public transport for important functions, equivalent to travelling to highschool or work; take holidays solely inside your personal family or assist bubble; and keep away from attending novice and semi-professional sporting occasions as spectators.
The localised adjustments are along with the UK-wide six-person restrict on social gatherings, which got here into power on Monday and will be enforced with a superb of 100 kilos for any breach. The Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) stated the measures can be stored beneath “constant review” to scale back the unfold of the virus and save lives.
The transfer comes because the DHSC additionally introduced motion to sort out the laboratory response to a quickly rising demand for coronavirus exams throughout the nation.
Two new so-called Lighthouse Labs in Newcastle and Bracknell will be part of what the division branded as the most important community of diagnostic testing services created in British historical past to assist scale up testing capability forward of winter.
The UK authorities has confronted criticism for its gradual testing capability, one thing it has pledged to rectify together with plans to make sure prioritising well being professionals for faster entry to a free coronavirus check.
“We are working tirelessly to boost testing capacity so that everyone who needs a test can get one. Each day, around 200,000 people are successfully booking and taking tests and we are growing our capacity to 500,000 tests across the UK by the end of October, with more and more capacity being added each week,” stated Baroness Dido Harding, the Interim Executive Chair of the newly-formed National Institute for Health Protection.
“I can not stress sufficient how vital it’s that solely these with signs guide exams. The service is there for these experiencing a excessive temperature, new steady cough or loss or change in sense of style or odor.
“If you don’t have symptoms but think, or have been told by NHS Test and Trace that you have been in contact with someone with the virus, please stay at home but do not book a test. We need everyone to help make sure that tests are there for people with symptoms who need them,” she stated. — PTI