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Preston’s coronavirus infection rate drops below 200 for first time since November as Health secretary delivers positive vaccine news

Posted on - 1st March, 2021 - 7:56pm | Author - | Posted in - Fylde News, Health, Politics, Preston News, Ribble Valley News, South Ribble News, Wyre News
Sunrise over Preston's chilly rooftops Pic: Tony Worrall
Sunrise over Preston’s chilly rooftops Pic: Tony Worrall

Preston remains in England’s top infection rates for Covid but has now seen the rate drop below 200 for the first time since the second national lockdown ended in early December.

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The city recorded 31 new cases for Monday (1 March).

South Ribble saw 10 cases for the same day.

Wyre was up by seven, Chorley by eight, South Ribble by 10 and Ribble Valley by just three.

Preston’s coronavirus rate is now 193.7 cases per 100,000 people for the seven days to February 25, down from 236.8 cases per 100,000 people for the seven days to February 18.

See the latest coronavirus cases and information by entering your postcode below or visiting InYourArea

Data for the most recent four days (February 26-March 1) has been excluded as it is incomplete and does not reflect the true number of cases.

The city is now seventh in England’s table of the highest infection rates listed by local authority and has the highest rate in Lancashire.

South Ribble’s infection rate is 156.2, down from 164.3, for the same two seven day periods as Preston.

Wyre’s rate is now 76.7, down from 120.4 and Fylde is at 108.9, down from 125.

Chorley is at 103.2, down from 166.6 and Ribble Valley is now 113.3, down from 128.1.

Read more: Chart shows how Preston and South Ribble Covid infection rate changed throughout February

Plea for lockdown rules to be followed as new study suggests vaccines are more effective than first thought

Health secretary Matt Hancock has warned the country not to “blow” progress made during the third national lockdown.

He made the Downing Street address as a new study by Public Health England indicated the Pfizer and Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccines are highly effective in reducing infections among older people.

“A single shot of either the Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine or of the Pfizer vaccine works against severe infection among the over-70s with a more than 80% reduction in hospitalisations”, Mr Hancock said.

“In fact, the detailed data show that the protection that you get from catching Covid 35 days after a first jab is even slightly better for the Oxford jab than for Pfizer, albeit both results are clearly very strong.”

See the latest coronavirus vaccine stats

Mr Hancock said people “must keep sticking to the rules, let’s not blow it now”.

Read more: Lancashire Police say there were more than 300 Covid rule breaches on Saturday alone

The Health Secretary defended the Government’s border arrangements following the detection of the cases of the worrying Manaus variant – from Brazil.

He said home quarantine measures were already in place and travel restrictions on Brazil had been imposed before the hotel policy was implemented.

Mr Hancock said: “All the evidence is that the five cases that we know about followed those quarantine rules and that, I hope, is very reassuring to people.

“There is no evidence that the sixth case did not follow those quarantine rules – we need to obviously get in contact with the person in question.”

The test was taken on February 12 or 13 and “we haven’t seen any further knock-on transmissions in the data”.

Read more: See the latest Preston news and headlines

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