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Kent's infection rate falls in last couple of days as Kent NHS trusts see drop in Covid-19 patients using beds

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The infection rate in Kent has dropped to 35.5 per 100,000 people following a spike of 46.14 on October 8, according to Public Health England.

Overall, the county saw a 14% rise in the number of weekly cases, standing at 660 compared to 579 the week before.

Only three areas saw a drop in the number of Covid-19 cases - Gravesham (-12%), Folkestone and Hythe (-15%) and Thanet (-13%).

Dover has seen cases almost double, from 21 in the final week of September to 41 last week. Dover's infection rate is 34.71.

The highest infection rates are in Tunbridge Wells at 57.28 and Sevenoaks at 54.66, with each recording just over 65 cases in the last week.

Medway still has the highest number of cases at 85 but its infection rate is lower than the whole of Kent at 30.59.

Kent's infection rate continues to be far lower than the UK average. The latest figures available for the UK on October 9 show the nationwide rate is 142.52, while Kent's was 40.55 on the same day.

Covid infections by area up to Oct 13 (42681706)
Covid infections by area up to Oct 13 (42681706)

Half of Kent's hospital trusts also saw the number of Covid-19 patients in hospital drop in September, according to NHS England.

At East Kent Hospitals University NHS Foundation Trust a mean of 11 beds were taken up per day in August, which dropped to three in September.

Kent Community Health NHS Foundation Trust saw a similar fall, with a mean of 10 beds being used throughout August dropping to two last month.

Dartford and Gravesham NHS Trust dropped from eight beds per day to two and Medway NHS Foundation Trust saw five beds per day fall to three beds.

Medway Community Healthcare, Maidstone and Tunbridge Wells NHS Trust and Kent and Medway NHS and Social Care Partnership Trust have seen no change and have had very few beds taken up for the past two months.

Beds taken up by covid patients Oct 13 (42681699)
Beds taken up by covid patients Oct 13 (42681699)

Following the government's recent announcement, a joint statement was released from Kent County Council and Medway Council’s directors of Public Health.

Andrew Scott-Clark and James Williams said: "The government has launched three new levels of restrictions, applicable to the whole country from Wednesday onwards. While we recognise cases are rising across Kent and Medway, at this time, it would appear that local authorities in the South East will be classified in the medium tier.

"This is the lowest level possible. This means that residents and businesses in Kent and Medway will not be subject to further restrictions than are currently in place for areas deemed medium risk.

"We will of course ensure that our outbreak management plans and any actions taken, now align with the Government’s new instructions, and we welcome the publication of their published guidance to support the announcements made yesterday afternoon.

"It is more important than ever that residents play their part to help protect themselves and others, particularly the most vulnerable members of the community who are most at risk from severe symptoms, and continue to follow the national guidelines.

"We are continuing to work with our partners across Kent, including Public Health England local health protection teams and the NHS, to monitor where cases are occurring and whether there are larger widespread community outbreaks.

"There is more testing available across the county and anyone experiencing Covid symptoms should self-isolate immediately and book a test. It is vital that the wider community in Kent continues to play its part and if you are contacted by the NHS Test and Trace service, then you should follow the guidance given to self-isolate.

"We also appeal to people to remember social distancing, regular handwashing and wearing a mask in public places to help keep the number of cases as low as possible. You can now also download the NHS Test and Trace app."

Covid cases Kent Oct 13 (42681697)
Covid cases Kent Oct 13 (42681697)

For more information on Covid-19 from Kent County Council, click here.

For the latest coronavirus news and advice, click here.

Read more: All the latest news from Kent

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