A VERY large jump has been recorded in cases of COVID-19 in the region – with Dumfries and Galloway now recording the highest rate of infections in Scotland.
In the week ending 15 August 2021 a total of 452 new cases was recorded, up dramatically from 274 the week before. Numbers of close contacts also shot up, from 679 to 1059.
Awareness of the current situation and continued efforts to try and suppress the spread of the virus is being urged, as Dumfries and Galloway now sits with the highest rate of infection in Scotland – standing at 275.1 per 100,000 people.
Director of Public Health Valerie White said: “We’ve seen a very steep jump in the number of cases within the region, increasing by 65 per cent last week, which on the face of it is highly concerning.
“As everyone will be aware, our messaging throughout this pandemic has been to try and stop the spread and keep case numbers as low as possible.
“Most national restrictions have now gone, but we know that the actions we take can help to limit the spread – like wearing face coverings, hand hygiene, being thoughtful about our interactions, regular testing and getting vaccinated.
“Schools reopen again tomorrow, and it’s vital that they are able to function as normally as possible. Education has already been so badly disrupted by the pandemic. To this end, controlling case numbers is really important.
“However, we are still learning about the difference being made by vaccinations, and the one thing we know for sure is that it is helping in the prevention of serious illness.
“We’re not seeing the same numbers of people being hospitalised due to illness through COVID as we were in other waves.
“However, cases continue to increase. The virus still poses a risk and has the potential to very significantly disrupt our everyday lives, and essential services like education.
“So please, do everything you can to help suppress the spread. If you haven’t already been vaccinated, please consider it now – aware that the coronavirus is circulating right across our communities, and that a double vaccination provides your best defence against its worst effects.
“Also, very importantly, if you do experience any symptoms of COVID, however mild, please don’t ignore them. Immediately self-isolate and book a test.
“For information on vaccinations, visit www.nhsdg.co.uk/vaccines/
“For information on testing, visit www.nhsdg.co.uk/testing/