Almost 300 cases of delta variant of coronavirus recorded in Sunderland
Almost 300 cases of the new delta coronavirus variant have now been recorded in Sunderland
The latest figures from Public Health England show there have been 280 confirmed or suspected cases in the city.
Figures published today (Friday 18 June) show there are 720 confirmed cases and 1,894 probable cases identified with the Delta variant across the region, a total of 2,614.
North Tyneside continues to be the regional focus of infection, with 548 cases.
The latest figures show there have been almost 200 new cases of the illness in Sunderland over the past seven days and the weekly case rate is now at the highest level the city has seen since February.
More than 60 new covid cases were recorded in Sunderland on Tuesday and again on Wednesday, the highest numbers since early February.
Professor Peter Kelly, Regional Director of Public Health England North East, urged everyone to remember the basic rules to prevent spread of the virus and to make sure they were vaccinated.
He said: “We know the Delta variant is at least 40% more transmissible than the Alpha variant, which was more prevalent at the start of the year. The rapid spread of the Delta variant has now become apparent and we need to take a cautious approach.
“It’s crucial we make further progress on vaccinating the entire adult population during the coming weeks and I would encourage those over 18 who have recently been invited for their vaccine to do so as soon as possible.”
All adults over the age of 18 in England are now being invited to receive their vaccines.
The importance of people receiving both jabs has also been highlighted by new research from Public Health England showing two vaccine doses are highly effective in reducing hospitalisation from all variants, including Delta.
Professor Kelly added: “There’s no doubt, the decision to delay the easing of coronavirus restrictions felt disappointing for many after everyone in the North East pulled together to stop the virus from spreading by following the guidance, working from home and staying apart from family and friends.
“But the delay is necessary to protect the excellent progress we’ve made and prevent it from sliding backwards. Remember, not everyone is fully protected, and the Delta variant is very infectious."