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Preston could see a lift of restrictions in the next few days, according to Director of Public Health

Posted on - 28th August, 2020 - 5:22pm | Author - | Posted in - Health, Preston News
Skyline of Preston catches a golden glow Pic: Paul Melling
Skyline of Preston catches a golden glow Pic: Paul Melling

Preston could see additional restrictions lifted in the next few days according to the Director of Public Health, Dr Sakthi Karunanithi.

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The city was put into a localised lockdown at midnight on 8th August and has seen the city restricted to only meeting with other households when outdoors.

This week, the number of coronavirus cases per 100’000 has reduced which, should the rates continue, could look good for further restrictions being lifted in the city.

Read More: Preston coronavirus rates are decreasing amid local restrictions

In a media briefing, Dr Sakthi Karunanithi said: “I think we have been very very proactive in Preston we didn’t wait for a national announcement to be made we actually have been very active in rolling out our testing programmes.

“If this rate continues in Preston we should see a similar approach taken by the government in terms of lifting the area out of an area of intervention.

“Fundamentally this is still avoiding mixing between members of different households and especially Preston being a university city we must be extra vigilant and it is a hub of the whole of Lancashire in terms of transport.

“Fantastic news for Preston the people of Preston have really come together to kick this virus down the line, at least the data shows that.

Dr Sakthi Karunanithi
Dr Sakthi Karunanithi has said the city could be de-escalated to an area of concern in the next few days

“I am very pleased with the progress in Preston I think if this continues we should see Preston from where we are now and de-escalated to being an area of concern in the next few days.”

Blog Preston asked in the Press Conference as to whether the city could see a hyper localized reduction in restrictions, similar to that in Blackburn with Darwen however the Director of Public Health did not feel this would be the best approach.

“There is a number of factor when these decisions are made, geography, how people move between areas,” he added

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“I would find it very hard to think that someone who lives in Deepdale will not go anywhere near city centre in Preston but it isn’t the case in Blackburn with Darwen, there are some clear distances and natural communities, I think it will be a number of factors.

Read More: ‘Please do not mix’ – Prestonians asked to help avoid a tighter lockdown

“As I said, the virus doesn’t respect the ward boundaries, there’s a number of factors, people moving how clearly we can communicate between these communities will have been taken into consideration and this is the fine judgement, fine balances that anybody that’s facing these decisions is having to make.

“My understanding of Preston is its much more closely knit communities and much more urban compared to what the situation is in Blackburn and Darwen.”

Councillor Matthew Brown, Leader of Preston City Council said: “We are really pleased with the recent figures that are demonstrating a positive trend in coronavirus cases in the city and hope to be in a position to confidently request the lifting of local restrictions from the city.

“And once they are lifted, we do not want to see them return. 

“We have been working very closely with the Director of Public Health for Lancashire, Dr Sakthi Karunanithi and his team throughout the pandemic and will continue to take his advice very seriously.

“As an authority we will always put the health and safety of our residents first.”

Read moreSee the latest Preston news and headlines

Do you think the additional restrictions should be lifted? Have you been following the tighter restrictions? Let us know in the comments

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