COVID back on the increase in Brentwood

Brentwood has seen an increase in COVID infections – with the number of cases per 100,000 up to 118 from 83 the week previously.

The increase means weeks of continually falling case numbers has been halted with the borough having the second highest prevalence of the virus in up to February 18 after Tendring.

Basildon has also seen a slight increase – up from 88.7 to 89.2.

Cllr John Spence, Essex County Council cabinet member for adults and health, said: “Case rates continue to decline at a reasonable rate, albeit less rapidly than in previous weeks, but we have seen significant reductions in a number of areas which had seen higher rates recently, including Tendring, Harlow and Braintree.

“However, there is some variation within Essex, with Brentwood, which had shown a low rate recently, now seeing an increase in recent days. We do expect this to fall again, but it is a stark reminder to us all that we simply cannot drop our guard now.

“We were given a very clear timeline out of the pandemic this week and I know this has been the welcome news we have all been waiting for, but we need to remember it will take a collective effort to get us there.

“I would urge every single resident in Essex to please keep following the guidance – socially distance, wash your hands regularly and wear a face covering if you are able to. It is vital that anyone that has to go out to work also gets testing frequently and if you test positive, you must self-isolate.”

The latest non verified figures for Brentwood have seen a slight decrease again back down to 106 per 100k residents as of February 26 though these figures are subject to change until next week.

Maldon has the lowest prevalence as of February 18 with 57 cases per 100,000 – ahead of Uttlesford at 65 and Epping Forest at 64.

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Piers Meyler

Local Democracy Reporter