May 21, 2021 9.04 am This story is over 34 months old

Still low occurrence of India COVID mutation in Lincolnshire

3% of cases are variants of concern

There is still a low occurrence of the India COVID mutation in Lincolnshire, with just 3% of cases containing variants of concern.

These include the Indian variant as well as the South African and Brazilian mutations, which are thought to be more contagious than the original strain, and can therefore spread faster in the population.

However, Lincolnshire health bosses said there are no signs of community transmission of the other variants besides the Kent variant, which is present in 97% of Lincolnshire’s cases.

The county is doing better than national figures which show 75% of coronavirus cases being the Kent variant, 23% being the Indian mutation, with 2% being other strains of the virus.

Lincolnshire saw around 150 positive cases of COVID-19 in the last seven days and of those, a third – 50 – were sequenced (analysed) to test for variants.

Just a third are sequenced due to government resources being needed in areas where there are larger outbreaks of the Indian variant, such as Bolton, where surge testing and mass vaccination is taking place.

Only PCR tests are sequenced, not the rapid lateral flow tests that you can order online or pick up from a local pharmacy.

Professor Derek Ward, director for public health at Lincolnshire County Council, said: “There’s no indication of community transmission of any other variants – Indian, South African, Brazilian etc.”

With lockdown restrictions easing at the start of the week, Professor Ward’s message to the public is: “If you are going to meet with the rule of six indoors, make sure you’ve got your windows, your doors open and got really good ventilation.

“But keep distance anyway and if you get offered the coronavirus vaccine please take it up because that is the reason that our rates are not going up.”