Saturday 13 July 2024
 12.6°C   NNE Moderate Breeze
Ocean Kinetics - The Engineering Experts

Coronavirus / Twenty three new Covid cases

Half of the new cases are primary school children, NHS Shetland says

A TOTAL of 23 new Covid cases have been reported in Shetland.

NHS Shetland said half of the cases are primary aged children and a number of schools are affected.

The health board said the significant rise in cases was “not unexpected” due to increasing numbers over the past few weeks and the amount of contact tracing which is taking place.

An NHS Shetland spokesperson said “typically, if one person in a household with children tests positive, then often the rest of the household also tests positive, including people who are vaccinated”.

However, they usually have mild symptoms, or no symptoms at all. But there are other “nasty coughs and colds around at the moment as well”.

Interim director of public health Dr Susan Laidlaw said: “Because of the large numbers of cases and contacts, there is a high demand on our testing service. The service prioritises all requests so that we can protect the most vulnerable people, generally those in health and social care settings.

“But other people, especially if an asymptomatic contact, will have to wait a little longer to get their swabs done at the pod, or get a self-swab kit, than previously.

“We understand, most people want to get their test done as quickly as possible after they have been identified as a contact, so they can stop isolating if it is negative (if they are vaccinated). But this is not always helpful as testing too soon will miss positive cases, so people do need to be aware of that.

“Please be patient and bear with our Test and Protect team who are contact tracing and processing test requests as quickly as they can.”

The advice to the Shetland community remains as before. To help prevent the spread of Covid and prevent serious illness:

Become a supporter of Shetland News

 
  • wear face coverings (even when you don’t have to by law)
  • wash and sanitise hands
  • keep buildings well ventilated
  • take regular lateral flow tests when you have no symptoms
  • isolate with your household and request a PCR if you have covid symptoms (or a positive LFT) and take up the offer of flu and Covid vaccinations.

People are asked to remember that contact tracing is still based on close contact with someone who is infectious, so the “best way to avoid that is to keep your distance from others whenever you can and minimise how many people you are in contact with”.

Dr Laidlaw added: “Our vaccination teams are also working really hard because people in Shetland are generally very keen to get vaccinated but please be patient if you are waiting for an appointment or a call back.

“Our uptake rates are amongst the highest in Scotland, especially for the booster: 62% of people, aged over 50 have received a booster dose, and we have not yet even started calling the 50-59 age group. Two thirds of 12–15-year-olds have now been vaccinated with the recommended one dose, and overall 93.2% of everyone over 18 has received two doses.

“If we can continue to achieve these high uptakes, this will continue to prevent serious illness, hospitalisation and deaths, even if we have high numbers of new cases.

“We know that there has been further advice issued by JCVI regarding second dose for 16–17-year-olds and boosters for 40–49-year-olds. We are currently planning how we can increase capacity to include these groups, in the meantime, please do not contact us but wait for further information.”

Parents/carers also asked to be extra vigilant when children are unwell due increasing cases in education settings.

If a child has been issued a low-risk contact letter “we would encourage even if mild cold/cough symptoms to remain at home and to request a PCR test”.

Ashleigh Barclay, health protection nurse specialist, said “We’re seeing the return of other respiratory illnesses as COVID-19 precautions relax, including RSV, rhinovirus (common cold virus) and parainfluenza (the virus that causes croup and other respiratory infections).

“That’s why it’s important to take steps to keep your child and others safe and healthy. If your child shows signs of being sick, keep them home from school/nursery to avoid spreading germs . You should keep your child home when they have any of the following symptoms: fever, diarrhoea, vomiting , cough/congestion.

“Staff within education and the NHS are working closely together to try and minimise the risk of spread for lots of different winter bugs including COVID-19 and we appreciate parents/carers understanding at this time.”

Become a supporter of Shetland News

Shetland News is asking its many readers to consider start paying for their dose of the latest local news delivered straight to their PC, tablet or mobile phone.

Journalism comes at a price and because that price is not being paid in today’s rapidly changing media world, most publishers - national and local - struggle financially despite very healthy audience figures.

Most online publishers have started charging for access to their websites, others have chosen a different route. Shetland News currently has  over 600 supporters  who are all making small voluntary financial contributions. All funds go towards covering our cost and improving the service further.

Your contribution will ensure Shetland News can: -

  • Bring you the headlines as they happen;
  • Stay editorially independent;
  • Give a voice to the community;
  • Grow site traffic further;
  • Research and publish more in-depth news, including more Shetland Lives features.

If you appreciate what we do and feel strongly about impartial local journalism, then please become a supporter of Shetland News by either making a single payment or monthly subscription.

Support us from as little as £3 per month – it only takes a minute to sign up. Thank you.

 

Newsletters

Subscribe to a selection of different newsletters from Shetland News, varying from breaking news delivered on the minute, to a weekly round-up of the opinion posts. All delivered straight to your inbox.

Daily Briefing Newsletter Weekly Highlights Newsletter Opinion Newsletter Life in Shetland Newsletter

JavaScript Required

We're sorry, but Shetland News isn't fully functional without JavaScript enabled.
Head over to the help page for instructions on how to enable JavaScript on your browser.

Your Privacy

We use cookies on our site to improve your experience.
By using our service, you agree to our Privacy Policy and Cookie Policy.

Browser is out-of-date

Shetland News isn't fully functional with this version of .
Head over to the help page for instructions on updating your browser for more security, improved speed and the best overall experience on this site.

Interested in Notifications?

Get notifications from Shetland News for important and breaking news.
You can unsubscribe at any time.

Become a supporter of Shetland News

We're committed to ensuring everyone has equitable access to impartial, open and quality local journalism that benefits all residents.

By supporting Shetland News, you play a vital role in ensuring we remain a pivotal resource in supporting the community.

Support us from as little as £3 per month – it only takes a minute to sign up. Thank you.