Covid-19 in numbers: The key facts from Suffolk and Essex
- Credit: SARAH LUCY BROWN
Data has been an incredibly important part of tracking the coronavirus as the pandemic has progressed; helping to inform decisions on both a local and national level.
But how can we interpret the statistics being collected about the virus and what can it tell us about Suffolk's experience of the pandemic?
When did coronavirus first arrive in Suffolk?
The first case of coronavirus in England was confirmed on January 30 in York but Suffolk didn't get its first case until over a month later.
Data shows that the first case in the county was in West Suffolk on March 3, 2020.
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East Suffolk was next to report a case on March 7, followed a day later by Ipswich.
Mid Suffolk's first case came on March 12 and lastly Babergh on March 14.
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Where have coronavirus cases been reported?
Despite being the first place to report a coronavirus case in the county, West Suffolk has not had the highest number of cases. East Suffolk has had more coronavirus cases than any other part of Suffolk with a current total of 8,626.
Mid Suffolk has reported the lowest number of cases at 3207.
In total Suffolk has had 29,306 cases of Covid-19 and in Essex 111,943.
Can we break that down further?
Neighbourhood level, Middle Super Output Area can help show where outbreaks have been in smaller areas, however, it's important to note that data has been counted in this way since September 2020.
It shows that seven out of the top 10 areas in the county were in Ipswich with Maidenhall, Stoke and Port coming top of the list with 579 cases.
Aside from Ipswich, the data shows a large number of cases in Hadleigh, most likely linked to an outbreak at one of the town's schools and a number of local care homes in December 2020.
The Rendlesham, Orford and Hollesley area also reported a high number of cases at 464.
This is in part likely to be linked to the Hollesley Bay prison which recorded a significant outbreak involving over 100 prisoners and staff in January 2021.
The data also highlights the lowest numbers of cases in areas of Suffolk; Lakenheath has had the lowest number of cases at 127, followed closely by Southwold, Reydon and Wrentham at 128.
How have our hospitals coped?
Our two major hospital trusts, the East Suffolk and North Essex NHS Foundation Trust and the West Suffolk NHS Foundation Trust have cumulatively seen almost 5,000 coronavirus patients since March 2020.
West Suffolk Hospital
West Suffolk had the first coronavirus patient admission on March 20. Since then it has seen 1,188 coronavirus patients.
At its height the hospital was treating 187 coronavirus patients.
In total, 265 coronavirus patients have died at West Suffolk hospital.
West Suffolk NHS Foundation Trust chief executive Stephen Dunn said: "Covid-19 has been and remains a particularly dangerous virus, and almost every ward at West Suffolk Hospital has treated patients with the virus at some point.
"Our community staff continue to treat patients as they recover back in their own homes. It always hurts when a patient passes away, whatever the cause, and our thoughts are with the friends and families of those no longer with us.
"Our staff have been absolutely remarkable in their dedication and flexibility in responding to the pandemic. We always support each other and while it has been difficult for our teams not to be able to give the hugs and comfort they might in normal times, we have found new ways to look out for each other.
"We also very grateful for the kindness of partner organisations like the MyWiSH Charity, Norfolk and Suffolk NHS Foundation Trust and Suffolk MIND, who have stepped up to offer additional support to colleagues."
ESNEFT, which consists of Ipswich and Colchester hospitals - as well as Aldeburgh Hospital which is known to have had at least one patient die there from the virus - saw its first coronavirus patients on March 21 when three people were taken to the hospital.
At its height the trust was treating 550 patients with the virus at the same time.
In total it's seen 3,786 patients admitted with the coronavirus with 1,231 patients having died at the hospitals.
Nick Hulme, chief executive of ESNEFT, said: “Our thoughts go out to those who have lost someone they loved to Coronavirus (COVID-19) and they’re also with our staff.
"Their kindness and compassion has meant so much to people in our communities through these difficult times.”
Other health care providers
Other healthcare providers in Suffolk have reported deaths from the coronavirus.
East Coast Community Healthcare, which runs Beccles Hospital, reported eight deaths.
The Norfolk and Suffolk NHS Foundation Trust, which manages the region's mental health services, reported six deaths from the virus.
What about care homes?
Suffolk's care homes have reported 437 deaths since the start of the pandemic.
Latest data from Suffolk County Council, which goes up to March 16, shows that there are currently 15 outbreaks in Suffolk care homes which was down more than half from the same time last month, when there were 51 homes reporting an outbreak.
How many people have died in total?
In Suffolk, 1,388 people have died within 28 days of a coronavirus test, in Essex this number is 3,913.
In addition to cases, MSOA level data has also been recorded for deaths in Suffolk.
Hadleigh was ranked the worst area in Suffolk for coronavirus deaths and ranked fifth nationally for such hyperlocal data.
Moreton Hall in Bury St Edmunds, on the other hand, has recorded the lowest number of deaths at just one.
How are vaccinations going?
The latest statistics on vaccinations for Suffolk have been incredibly positive.
Parts of Suffolk are among the best performing areas for coronavirus vaccines in the country.
Felixstowe East is the most vaccinated area of the county with 68.4% of those over 16 having been vaccinated followed by Saxmundham & Coldfair Green at 67.2%.
The lowest number of vaccinations was recorded in Westgate in Ipswich at just 28%.