New COVID-19 data shows infection still limited in Lincolnshire

Around 3% of historic COVID-19 tests carried out at the Lincolnshire Showground, mobile testing units and through home kits since the beginning of the pandemic have come back positive according to latest data.

Last night, government’s confirmed cases figures for Lincolnshire rose by 1,252 (80%) to a total of 2,410 after historic community testing was included in the data following weeks of badgering by local health bosses.

The total for Greater Lincolnshire was 3,328 coronavirus cases including both pillar one (hospital and health care testing), and pillar two (fixed testing sites, mobile and home testing) data.

Lincolnshire’s director of public health Derek Ward said it was really helpful to now have much of the required data in one place – though more was still needed for a fuller picture.

He said: “It’s really important that we know how many people in hospital have coronavirus because obviously they’re generally the most sick and the most at risk people, and we’ve had that from very early doors.

“But it’s really important as well to understand how many people are isolated and then going to get a test and how many of those positive.”

Health bosses also now have data at a post-code level meaning they will soon be able to see where hotspots are flaring up across the county.

According to health chiefs in the county, 40,870 pillar two tests were carried out between April and June 30 – meaning the 1,252 confirmed cases represent 3.06% of tests carried out.

The figure is close to but above the national 2.86% infection rate, with 283,757 of the. 9,914,663 tests carried out across the UK coming back positive.

“I’m really comfortable with that,” said Mr Ward.

“I’d much rather somebody who’s got symptoms isolates straight away, goes and gets themselves booked on for a test, gets the test, and if comes back negative, then they can carry on.”

“We need to recognise that we want to be testing in the community, because we want to try and find people who are positive and helping them to isolate and looking after themselves.

“So, we don’t want low numbers of community tested, but equally, we don’t want to be number one particularly because it means in terms of positives we’re getting a lot and we’re certainly not there either.”

The latest figures for pillar one testing locally have not yet been made available, meaning the percentage for the other 1,158 can’t be worked out yet.

According to Office of National Statistics estimates, the population of Lincolnshire was around 750,000 meaning the total number of cases equates around 0.32% of residents.

Mr Ward said the county still had much lower rates compared to other areas of the country despite the jump in figures and that it was still “one of the lowest in the Midlands, if not the lowest”.

A map showing the general rates of infection for Lincolnshire.

He continued to urge people, despite the relaxation of lockdown rules this weekend, to continue to adhere to social distancing, washing hands and keeping two metres apart where possible.

Local authority data from government shows that under the new figures, South Holland has had the most cases with 695.

The breakdown for local council areas in Lincolnshire is:

  • South Holland – 695
  • Boston Borough – 483
  • South Kesteven – 392
  • Lincoln – 251
  • East Lindsey – 233
  • North Kesteven – 213
  • West Lindsey – 143

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