Calvin Robinson, Local Democracy Reporter

Calvin Robinson, Local Democracy Reporter

Calvin is the local democracy reporter covering Greater Lincolnshire. You can contact him directly with your news and tips on [email protected]

Outbreaks of coronavirus in Greater Lincolnshire’s care homes since the start of the pandemic have been revealed.

Figures from Public Health England show the number of suspected or confirmed COVID-19 cases reported in facilities since the start of March.

According to the data, up to April 21 a total of 66 outbreaks were reported across the wider-county.

The figures were released as part of a government effort to be more transparent about the impact of coronavirus on communities and care homes.

North Lincolnshire had the most reported outbreaks, with 15 reported – around 25% of all the county’s care homes.

The lowest was in Boston with two recorded in the region’s 17 care homes.

Meanwhile, Lincoln had 11 outbreaks reported which amounts to around 35% of all the city’s facilities.

  • Lincoln – 11
  • North Kesteven – 5
  • South Kesteven – 10
  • West Lindsey – 7
  • East Lindsey – 6
  • Boston – 2
  • South Holland – 4
  • North Lincolnshire – 15
  • North East Lincolnshire – 6

Around a third of all care homes in the UK have reported a confirmed or suspected outbreak of coronavirus, according to the data.

More than 4,500 care homes across the country may have been affected by the virus, approximately 29% of all care homes since March 10.

The news comes as public health officials in Lincolnshire confirmed that 19 people have died of COVID-19 in the county’s care homes.

Tony McGinty, assistant director of public health at Lincolnshire County Council, said: “Every single one of those deaths is tragic. Each one of them represents a person that has likely died earlier than they might have done.

“They may not have been able to have families around them because of restrictions and every death is one too many.”

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Lincolnshire remembers loved ones lost to coronavirus

Sixty-two patients are currently being treated for COVID-19 in northern Lincolnshire hospitals while more than 90 have been discharged so far.

Northern Lincolnshire and Goole NHS Foundation Trust, which runs Grimsby and Scunthorpe hospitals, confirmed that 62 people who tested positive for coronavirus are receiving care in its hospitals.

It comes as recent days have seen a spike in the number of cases, with 322 people testing positive across the region.

Meanwhile, more than 90 COVID-19 patients have been discharged from hospitals in northern Lincolnshire.

Diana, Princess of Wales Hospital, Grimsby. Picture: Calvin Robinson.

Trust officials said the number of discharges was down the hard work of staff.

A spokesperson for NLaG said: “We are pleased to report that more than 90 patients, who have tested positive for Covid-19, have been discharged from our hospitals in Scunthorpe, Grimsby and Goole in the past few weeks.

“We wish every single one of them the very best as they continue their recovery.

“A big thank you to all our staff for the care, compassion and dedication they have shown in supporting these patients as well as the staff supporting other patients in our hospitals and community settings.”

So far, 52 people have died in the trust’s hospitals – a further eight were confirmed yesterday (April 23).

Some 218 cases have so far been recorded in North Lincolnshire, while 104 have been found in North East Lincolnshire.

Meanwhile, Lincolnshire’s total number of coronavirus cases increased to 712 yesterday.

It means the total number to have tested positive for COVID-19 across wider Lincolnshire is more than 1,000.

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Public health bosses in Lincolnshire have warned that a coronavirus vaccine is a “long way off” despite human trials expected to start this week.

Health Secretary Matt Hancock announced yesterday that a University of Oxford vaccine will start to test on humans as of Thursday (April 23).

But, Tony McGinty, assistant director of public health at Lincolnshire County Council, said even if the trials are successful the vaccine will not be available until next year.

“It is a big step and it is promising,” he said.

Tony McGinty, assistant director of public health at Lincolnshire County Council. Photo: The Lincolnite

“However, people need to realise that the human testing phase is a long period of time.

“They do not just need to see if you are okay the day after the vaccine, they need to see if you are okay in the weeks and months after.

“We are still quite a long way off something that is going to be available for the population.”

It comes as Mr Hancock announced further funding for coronavirus vaccine projects in the UK.

He announced an extra £22.5 million for a project at Imperial College London and £20 million for the scientists at Oxford.

The Oxford project is expected to start its clinical trials and test on humans this Thursday. Meanwhile the investment will also help Imperial College with its phase two trials.

Mr Hancock said the government will back the vaccine developments “to the hilt” by investing in manufacturing if they are successful.

“I am certain that we will throw everything that we have got at developing a vaccine,” he said.

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