Health leaders commit additional Covid tests to tackle Hadleigh outbreak

Additional testing is taking place at Hadleigh care homes. Picture: CHARLOTTE BOND

Additional testing is taking place at Hadleigh care homes. Picture: CHARLOTTE BOND - Credit: Charlotte Bond

Additional testing is being lined up for Hadleigh care homes in a bid to curb the spread of Covid-19.

A summit of community leaders took place on Thursday afternoon, resulting in a fresh commitment for more testing.

A spokesman from Public Health Suffolk said: “The situation in Hadleigh is being taken extremely seriously.

“The majority of cases are linked to care and nursing homes, and incredibly detailed tracing of cases continues, but there is no obvious single source of transmission.

MORE: Covid alert issued for Hadleigh as case numbers increase“This is especially true in the community, which accounts for about one in five of all cases in the Hadleigh area.

“Therefore the message to Hadleigh residents remains very clear: Hands, Face, Space.

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“Limit your interaction with others wherever possible – do all you can to stop the virus spreading from person to person, you may have it and not realise.

“Hadleigh can be reassured that local authorities are working with the community, and care settings are receiving the support they need from adult community services, Public Health, infection prevention control and the local GP practice.

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“Everyone must continue to follow government guidance to slow the spread of the virus.”

In the week up to November 21, 65 new cases were recorded in the town, with an infection rate of 583 per 100,000, up from the 475 per 100,000 rate the week prior.

The spike in cases caused Babergh District Council and health leaders to issue a local Covid alert in which it urged the community to pull together and prevent the spread.

More than 40 people tested positive at the Magdalen House care home at the start of the month, while cases were also recorded at the high school.

However, Public Health Suffolk said its data indicated the spread had also been in the community itself.

Head of knowledge and intelligence team at Suffolk County Council, Anna Crispe, told the authority’s scrutiny committee on Thursday: “Hadleigh does still have a higher case rate but that rate is starting to drop, and that’s positive.

“We have called on advice from Public Health England because we did see case rates in those homes that were unusually high. Public Health England have provided some advice about extending the testing.”

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