In the seven days up to 1 October (based on data published on 5 October) we had 115 confirmed new COVID-19 cases in Brighton & Hove. This is:
- an increase from 39 cases in the previous 7-day period (up to 24 September)
- equivalent to a weekly rate of new cases of 39.5 per 100,000 residents
- lower than the rate for England, which was 97.5 per 100,000, during the same period.
It’s really concerning that the number of cases has more than doubled over the past week. If transmission keeps increasing we risk the Government imposing more restrictions on the city.
To prevent this happening I am asking you all to play your part by making extra efforts to keep your distance, wash your hands, wear a face covering, limit contact with others and follow the rule of six. If you do have Covid symptoms self-isolate (along with your household members) and get tested.
We all now need to make extra efforts – or risk a local lockdown.
On behalf of residents, the council worked hard to ensure that the Government increased testing capacity in Brighton & Hove.
With the new local testing unit in East Brighton and a local mobile testing unit, in the last 10 days of September the rate of local people tested increased by more than 60%. We have now added this data to our website so you can see the numbers of people being tested in the city.
This gives a more accurate picture of the number of confirmed cases of Covid-19 than we had in the previous week. However, this does not explain all the increase that we have seen.
In common with most areas in the country, it is likely that the data shows infection rates are on the rise. We have added a page to show the rate of confirmed cases in Brighton & Hove compared to the rest of the country.
Who is most affected?
Rates of infection are highest and still growing among young people aged 16-25 years old. This includes teenagers and sixth-formers as well as students and young adults. We know that most infections happen when people from different households mix and socialise with each other – which includes house and flat shares as well as families.
What does this mean for the city?
The council will be working closely with local businesses, including hospitality venues, to help them keep their customers and employees safe by complying with guidelines to:
- Maintain physical distancing
- Wear face coverings when required, if able to do so
- Wash hands regularly or use hand sanitiser
- Display a barcode for the NHS Test and Trace app
- Or collect contact details for people who do not have a smart phone to use the app.
What can we do to stop Covid?
The Hands, Face, Space guidelines prevent the virus spreading, but only if we keep to them – especially when meeting-up with friends. This includes car sharing and sports as well as socialising. That is why social distancing, face coverings, reducing your number of contacts and the rule of six are so important. The virus spreads most quickly when people are close together.
To help break the chain of transmission if you are exposed to the virus, it is essential to support contact tracing by using the NHS Test and Trace App or provide contact details when asked.
If you have symptoms or are waiting for the results of a test it is vitally important that you, and everyone you live with, stay at home and self-isolate for the specified period of time. Otherwise the virus can infect people you meet or get close to in shops and on public transport.
Our advice for care homes is to continually review risk assessments for visits while local rates rise. These are necessary for individuals as well the whole care home. Care homes should also continue to update families about visitor policies and measures being taken to keep residents safe. Further information and support can be found on our visiting care homes page.
Play your part to stop Covid
The rate of confirmed cases in Brighton & Hove is still lower than many parts of England. But it is higher than in most other parts of Sussex and we are now one step closer to Government intervention.
I cannot stress enough how important it is that we all double our efforts to stop Covid spreading further in our city by:
- Keep up physical distancing – especially in places where people cluster like bus stops, crossings, doorways and queues
- Wash hands regularly - or use hand gel when that is not possible
- Wear face coverings if you able to – and be considerate of those who can’t
- Limit contact between households – and follow the rule of six
- Use the NHS Test and Trace app if you have a smart phone - or give contact details when asked
- Self-isolate if you have symptoms or are waiting for a test – along with everyone you live with.
Nobody wants Brighton & Hove to experience the additional restrictions that are in place in other parts of the country. We must all come together and play our part to stop Covid and keep Brighton & Hove open."