The total number of new coronavirus cases confirmed in the last seven days has more than double across Devon and Cornwall – but some areas have seen a fall.
Daniel Clark www.devonlive.com
Government statistics show that 365 new cases have been confirmed across the region in the past seven days in both pillar 1 data from tests carried out by the NHS and pillar 2 data from commercial partners, compared to 155 new cases confirmed last week.
The number of new cases confirmed in Cornwall has tripled, going from 60 to 179, while Plymouth has seen a small rise from 45 to 74. In Torbay, cases have increased ninefold, although from a 2 to 18, while in the Devon County Council area, they have nearly doubled, from 48 to 96.
Of the 365 new cases, 179 were in Cornwall, with 11 in East Devon, 50 in Exeter, 2 in Mid Devon, 6 in North Devon, 74 in Plymouth, 15 in the South Hams, 7 in Teignbridge, 18 in Torbay, 1 in Torridge, and 2 in West Devon.
Mid Devon and Torridge have seen a fall in cases compared to the previous week, while numbers for Teignbridge and West Devon have remained the same.
Those four areas, plus North Devon, are among the lowest ten places in the country in terms of cases per 100,000 population.
Of the 365 new cases confirmed, 303 of the cases have a specimen date of between September 18 and September 24, with some of the other 62 cases dated back to August, although the majority had a specimen date between September 14-17.
Of the 303 of the cases had a specimen date of between September 18 and September 24, 147 of Cornwall cases occurred in that period, with 9 in East Devon, 47 in Exeter, 5 in North Devon, 14 in the South Hams, 6 in Teignbridge, 61 in Plymouth, 12 in Torbay, 1 in Torridge, and 1 in West Devon. Mid Devon has not seen a case by specimen date since September 17.
By specimen date, the most recent case in Torbay is September 24, Cornwall, Plymouth, Exeter, North Devon, the South Hams, Teignbridge and Torridge from September 23, East Devon and West Devon September 21, and September 17 for Mid Devon.
While the number of cases in Devon have significantly risen, more than half of the cases are linked to students at the University of Exeter, who recently arrived for the start of term already having the virus, and who have inadvertently passed it on to their housemates.
All of the Exeter cases, and their households, are self-isolating and following public health advice, and there is no evidence at this stage of the virus spreading into the wider community.
While in Cornwall, a large number of the cases, up to 88, are believed to be linked to an outbreak last week at the Pilgrim’s Pride factory in Pool.
Of the cases with a specimen date of between September 15 to 21, there are currently 23 clusters where three of more cases have been confirmed in a Middle Super Output Area – three in Devon, eight in Plymouth, and 12 in Cornwall.
There is a cluster of four cases in Totnes Town and three in Yealmpton, Modbury & Aveton Gifford in the South Hams, and 23 in Pennsylvania and University in Exeter.
In Plymouth, Plympton Chaddlewood, St Budeaux, Cattedown & Prince Rock, City Centre, Barbican & Sutton Harbour have clusters of 3, with Southway and Derriford and Estover 4, Keyham 5, and Mutley 11.
In Cornwall, there is a cluster of 3 in Bodmin East and St Agnes & Mount Hawke , 4 in Redruth North, Lanreath, Pelynt & Polraun, Crowan, Wendron & Stithians, and Illogan & Portreath, 6 in Camborne South, 7 in Camborne West and Redruth South, 13 in Camborne East, 16 in Kingsand, Antony & Maryfield, and 23 in Pool & Illogan Highway.
And while there has been a rise in cases across the region from previous figures, the number of people in hospital with coronavirus has continued to remain relatively low compared to the rest of the country.
In the South West, the figure has risen from 15 as of last Friday to 34 as of today, with only three patients on ventilation. That figure on Wednesday had risen to 36, and new admissions have fallen from numbers earlier in the week.
No new deaths across Devon and Cornwall were recorded in the most weekly ONS figures.
The R Rate for the South West is now being estimated as between 1.1 and 1.4,
In total, Torridge has had 71 positive cases, West Devon 81, with 142 in the South Hams, 153 in North Devon, 241 in Mid Devon, 256 in Teignbridge, 294 in East Devon, 338 in Torbay 353 in Exeter, 912 in Plymouth and 1265 in Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly.
Torridge remains the place in England with the lowest overall positivity rate, and is 3rd in the overall table behind Na h-Eileanan Siar (Outer Hebrides) and the Orkney Islands.
Including Scotland and Wales as well, West Devon is 6th, North Devon 8th, South Hams 9th, Teignbridge 11 th , East Devon 14 th , Cornwall 16 th , Torbay 24th, Exeter 32 nd Mid Devon 43rd and Plymouth 63rd of the 369 regions.
The COVID-19 cases are identified by taking specimens from people and sending these specimens to laboratories around the UK to be tested. If the test is positive, this is a referred to as a lab-confirmed case.
Confirmed positive cases are matched to ONS geographical area codes using the home postcode of the person tested.