Update from District Councillor Gabrielle Spray 15th Jan 2021

Good morning all. A slightly more upbeat COVID 19 update this week.
The case rate for Essex County for the week to 7th Jan (the last date for which figures are available) is 1,020 per 100,000 population. This is a fall from 1,039 the previous week. It’s only a small drop but it’s going in the right direction.
Age Groups: There has been a sharp drop in the 20-49 age group numbers which is really good. The under 20s and 50-49 age group numbers are also down. Unfortunately, the +70s cases are not going down as fast but let’s hope that improves.
Districts: All Districts are showing a drop in cases apart from two. Tendring has a huge spike to 1,218 per 100k and Colchester 880. We don’t know why this is. Braintree District is down to 994.80 from 1,074 the previous week. Again, only a slight reduction but it’s a hopeful sign.
Tests: 47,642 were carried out in Essex week commencing 1st January with a positivity rate of 19% for Braintree which is also a reduction on previous weeks. All good.
Hospitals: All Essex hospitals continue to be under extreme pressure but are coping. At 12th January there were 1,422 confirmed Covid patients which is 40% of hospital trust capacity and 39% higher than one week previously. Amazing work being done by all hospital and care staff who must be exhausted.
Sadly, there were 214 Covid related deaths over the last week which is 40% up on the week before.
There has been an outbreak at Chelmsford prison with seven members of staff and 40+ inmates testing positive.
Finally, the vaccination roll out started at the Pump House Surgery in Earls Colne yesterday (Thursday). Thanks to the organisational abilities of a number of people and to the many volunteers who came forward, it all went smoothly.
Stay safe and well everyone and have as good a weekend as you can manage.
Best wishes. Gabrielle