COVID infection rates across Dorset have fallen again this week but still remain at high levels.
The latest data released on January 29 showed that the Dorset Council area had an infection rate of 264.5 per 100,000 people, compared to 310.4 on January 22, and the Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole (BCP) Council area had a rate of 592.4, compared to 793.8.
These are both higher than the average South West infection rate of 247.9 and BCP’s was the 15th highest infection rate of all local authorities in the UK.
Confirmed cases for the seven day period up until January 29 stood at 1,001 in the Dorset Council area, a decrease from 1,175 the previous week, and 2,342 in the BCP area, a decrease from 3,138.
Hospital admissions have levelled off, with 537 COVID patients in hospital beds in Dorset as of January 29, compared to 552 the previous week, but local NHS services are still under significant pressure and there have also been outbreaks in care settings across Dorset.
These factors mean COVID-related deaths across Dorset continue to rise.
NHS England publish weekly data on the number of COVID-19 vaccinations given by local area. Up to January 24, 110,737 doses had been administered to people in Dorset. More than 83% of over 80s across the county have received their first dose.
Lyme Regis COVID case numbers
Following a spike in cases in the Lyme Regis area over the New Year period, case numbers now remain low with fewer than three recorded across Lyme Regis, Charmouth and the Marshwood Vale in the seven day period up until January 26.
In small areas with fewer than three cases, the full data is not provided to protect individuals’ identities.
However, in the neighbouring Kilmington, Colyton and Uplyme area, cases rose again to 10 – an increase of eight on the previous seven day-period.
As of January 26, Axminster had seven cases, a decrease of six; Seaton had six, the same as the previous week; Burton Bradstock and Chideock and fewer than three cases; Bridport North has three, a decrease of five; and Bridport South and West Bay had three, a decrease of three.
A spokesperson from Dorset Council said: “It remains critically important that everyone stays at home as much as possible and only goes out for essential reasons.
“The more we stay at home, the fewer chances the virus has to spread, meaning we can bring infection rates down further, reduce the pressure on our health and care system and save lives.
“Anyone who develops any symptoms of COVID-19, even if they are mild, should book a test straight away. You must stay at home with your household until you get your results; only leave home to get tested.”