Devon districts lowest for covid-19

No hospital deaths in Devon since 29 June

The number of coronavirus cases confirmed in the last week has fallen across Devon.

But because numbers have risen in Cornwall, the combined average per day across the two counties is up over the week from 4.57 to 5.88. It means an average of 5.88 cases a day across the two counties are being confirmed, compared to 4.57 last week.

Splitting out Devon, there has been a small rise from three to 5fivein Torbay, numbers in Plymouth have remained the same, while across the rest of Devon, cases dropped from 15 to 12. Across the Devon County Council area, which excludes Torbay and Plymouth, of the 12 cases, three were confirmed in East Devon, four in Exeter, three in North Devon, one in Torridge, and one in Teignbridge, with no cases in Mid Devon, West Devon or the South Hams.

Dr Virginia Pearson, director of public health for Devon, said: “While there have been hotspots in other parts of the region, covid-19 cases in Devon remain very low, Devon’s district council areas account for four of the lowest five ‘lower tier local authorities’ in England for confirmed coronavirus cases, making Devon one of the lowest ranking areas of the country for coronavirus cases. And Devon’s infection rate is the second lowest of more than 150 ‘upper tier’ councils in England. “This is in part thanks to our residents following national guidance on staying home, social distancing, handwashing and wearing facemasks. We need to keep that up.”

Of the 29 of the districts in the south west region, which stretches from Cornwall to Dorset and Gloucestershire, and over a ten day period, only Swindon, Bristol and Wiltshire are reporting an average of more than two new cases a day. Across the region, 20 people in hospital were in hospital with covid-19 at the end of July compared to 48 at the start of the month. At the time of writing, no-one on a mechanical ventilator in hospitals in the south west. No one has died of the disease in Devon since 29 June.

Despite its first case for 19 days, Torridge remains the district with the lowest positive case infection rate of any of the 319 district councils in England per 100,000 population, with the South Hams now 2nd, North Devon 4th, West Devon 5th, East Devon 8th, Teignbridge 9th, Exeter 15th, Torbay 21st, Plymouth 37th, and Mid Devon 39th. Torridge has also had the fewest number of cases of any of the districts, with West Devon 2nd, and the South Hams and North Devon also in the bottom five.

Covid-19 cases are identified by taking specimens from people and sending these specimens to laboratories around the UK to be tested. If the test is positive, this is a referred to as a lab-confirmed case. Confirmed positive cases are matched to ONS geographical area codes using the home postcode of the person tested.

The data is now shown by the date the specimen was taken from the person being tested and while it gives a useful analysis of the progression of cases over time, it does mean that the latest days’ figures may be incomplete.

Radio Exe: Local News