Liverpool lockdown measures imminent as coronavirus cases rise - The Guide Liverpool

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Liverpool lockdown measures imminent as coronavirus cases rise

17/09/2020

Liverpool is on the verge of local lockdown and is now at ‘intervention level’ with a series of new measures imminent.

Matt Ashton, director of public health for Liverpool said it’s not just the number of cases of Covid across the city but the rapid increase in cases over the last two weeks that is concerning: “This is a serious situation right now. Our rate now is just under 107 per 100,000.

“It’s this rate that helps define whether you’re an area of concern, on a watch list and when you need intervention. The rate rise means Liverpool is now at intervention level.”

And he added: “We are in discussions with government, and we are expecting a series of measures to be announced tomorrow (Friday).”

It won’t, he says, be national lockdown mark two.

But he stressed: “I am certain there will be measures, like no inter-household mixing.

“That doesn’t mean people aren’t allowed out, but it is about the close proximity.”

Liverpool could follow the north east where tighter restrictions were announced today and come into effect tomorrow.

There, residents will not be able to mix with people outside their household or social bubble and bars, pubs and restaurants will be forced to close from 10pm.

Matt Ashton said the large number of cases spread right across the city.

Last week 60% of cases were in under 40-year-olds, but that has spread across age groups, including older age groups.

And there has been an increase in hospitalisations, and beds being filled with Covid-19.

“At the moment, the virus has mainly been in younger age groups who won’t go into hospital, but the more they pass it on to other people those hospitalisations will start to increase and then deaths will start to increase.”

He said the news was important for everyone because of the implications on individuals and on the city as a whole.

But he said while it was bad, it wasn’t all ‘doom and gloom’.

“This is about trying to control the virus at as early a stage as possible, for our city and our businesses.

“From a preventative perspective, as soon as we take action the sooner we will be able to see life return to ‘normal’.”

As well as no mixing of households, there are likely to be restrictions surrounding the most vulnerable, like residents in care homes. There might also, he said, be others focusing around sport and cultural activities.

In the business community, he suggested there are further challenges, with companies and organisations ‘pushing for face coverings wherever possible’.

He said: “Lockdown is horrible. National lockdown was a horrible experience for all of us and there were adverse effects and implications on all of us, on business, and on health and well-being.

“And, throughout all of this, we also have to work out how we all stay fit and healthy, and how inequalities don’t get made worse.

“There is absolutely a role for physical activity, for healthy eating and for well-being type activities to get us through this.

“The issue is working out how we do it in a Covid-safe way, that’s the same as the business challenge. I don’t want the city to grind to a halt, I want the city to continue but do things in a different way, that allows us to keep the residents of the city safe, and the economy safe.”

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