Covid cases have again risen in the Devon County Council area and Plymouth, but fallen slightly in Torbay.
Ollie Heptinstall, local democracy reporter www.radioexe.co.uk
In the week to Thursday 30 September cases increased by 20 per cent in the Devon County Council area and six per cent in Plymouth but were down by seven per cent in Torbay.
All three council areas are below the national average of 348. Devon’s cases per 100,000 people now stands at 311, while the numbers in Torquay and Plymouth are 338 and 256 respectively.
Of the county’s eight district areas, North and Mid Devon recorded the biggest rises of around 45 per cent, putting North Devon infection rate now above the national average at 380 cases per 100,000. Mid Devon’s is still significantly lower at 247.
Torridge and Teignbridge also had increases of around a third (35 per cent), with the infection rate in Torridge now above the UK figure. East Devon mirrored the county with cases here going up by a fifth, while Exeter’s cases increased by 24 per cent.
Elsewhere, South Hams recorded the only significant fall in Devon, of 27 per cent, though West Devon did see a minor drop of four cases compared to the previous week.
Last week the covid enhanced response area for Devon and Cornwall, put in place after infections soared during the summer tourist season, came to an end after public health officials didn’t request an extension.
Despite fluctuating case numbers in some parts of the county, there seems to be a clear trend downwards in the number of people being treated for covid in Devon’s hospitals. The figure is again down on last week – by 24.
Latest figures for Tuesday 28 September show 73 covid patients in the county’s hospitals, 28 of which are at Derriford in Plymouth, 28 at the RD&E, 10 in Torbay, 5 in North Devon and two at Devon Partnership mental health trust sites. Of the total number of patients, eight are on mechanical ventilation beds.
Fourteen more people died in the county within 28 days of testing positive for covid in the latest complete weekly period (up to Wednesday 29 September). Nine were in the Devon County Council area, three in Plymouth and two in Torbay.
A total of 1,225 people in Devon (including Plymouth and Torbay) have died within 28 days of a positive test since the pandemic began.
The government has announced that vaccination percentages for the UK “will not be updated while we work on a solution to include 12-15 year olds”.
Last week’s figures showed the number of people aged over 16 who have received at least one dose of a vaccine was 87 per cent in the Devon County Council area, 86 per cent in Torbay and 84 per cent in Plymouth.
The proportion of people who were fully vaccinated with both jabs was 82 per cent in Devon, 79 per cent in Torbay and 77 per cent in Plymouth.
Current rises in East Devon are concentrated in two age groups: 0-19 and 40-59 year olds; school children and their parents?