Preston and South Ribble coronavirus infection rates reach new lows and face masks could be gone this summer

Posted on - 23rd April, 2021 - 7:39pm | Author - | Posted in - Fylde News, Health, Politics, Preston News, Ribble Valley News, South Ribble News, Wyre News
A sunny day in Fishergate Pic: Tony Worrall
A sunny day in Fishergate Pic: Tony Worrall

Preston’s latest coronavirus infection rate shows a continued downward trend as it’s understood the government may be advised the country can go face-mask free from the summer.


New coronavirus cases for Friday (23 April) showed 11 new cases in Preston.

South Ribble recorded five new Covid cases for the same day.

Wyre was up by one case, Ribble Valley by one, Fylde by two cases and Chorley up by four cases.

Preston’s infection rate is now 30.7 cases per 100,000 people for the seven days to April 19, down from 42.6 cases per 100,000 people for the seven days to April 12.

See the latest coronavirus cases and information near you

Data for the most recent four days (April 20-23) has been excluded as it is incomplete and does not reflect the true number of cases.

South Ribble’s rate is now just 17.1, down from 37.9 for the same two date periods as Preston.

Wyre is at 10.7, down from 13.4 and Fylde’s rate is now 7.4, down from 24.8.

Ribble Valley dropped to 9.9, down from 16.4 and Chorley is at 32.1, down from 44.8.

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Face masks to be gone by the summer?

Government scientific advisors believe the coronavirus vaccine may allow people to ditch face masks over the summer.

Step four of the Government’s road map for England currently states that all legal limits on social contact will be removed by June 21 at the earliest, when restrictions on large events such as festivals are also expected to ease.

Scientists advising the Government say there is nothing currently in the data to suggest that people will not be able to enjoy a relatively normal summer, though coronavirus cases may well rise as the autumn approaches.

Asked about mask-wearing in the coming months, one source said that vaccines are working so well, and there is such good vaccine uptake among members of the public, that things will return to much more like normal life over the summer months, with cases dropping very low in May.

However, masks and possibly other measures may be needed next autumn and winter if cases surge, they said.

Nevertheless, the general view among scientific advisers is that the spike in cases in winter will be lower than in the past due to high levels of immunity and vaccination.

See the latest coronavirus vaccination stats and information near you

The source said that what happens will depend on people’s behaviours as well as measures such as increased ventilation indoors, good hand hygiene and whether people isolate when they display symptoms – seen as the critical to controlling spread.

They said the UK needs to abandon its culture of “presenteeism” and going into work when feeling unwell, instead choosing to stay at home if they fall sick.

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