'Close eye' on Breckland as Covid cases rise

The service will take place at the London Road Cemetery chapel in Thetford. Picture: Simon Parker

Covid-19 outbreaks in Thetford are being managed by public health teams. - Credit: Archant

Outbreaks of coronavirus in the Thetford area have pushed up Covid-19 case rates in Breckland, public health bosses have confirmed.

While the coronavirus rates in Norfolk are low compared to the England and East of England rates, public health bosses have been keeping a close eye on the rise in cases in the Breckland area in recent weeks.

In the seven days up to Saturday, May 29, Norfolk's coronavirus rate went down 5pc compared to the previous week.

It dropped from 12.1 cases per 100,000 people to 11.5, but the highest rates were in Breckland.

It went up by 32pc there, from 20 cases per 100,000 people to 26.4 cases per 100,000 people.

And, in Thetford North, there were 22 cases between Saturday, May 22 to Friday May 28 - a rate of 336 cases per 100,000 people.

More recent figures show 20 cases between Sunday, May 23 and Saturday, May 29.

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Norfolk County Council says it is managing a number of outbreaks - defined as two or more linked cases - in the area.

It is understood there have been a number of cases within schools, but that council officers are confident it is not spreading within the wider community.

The cases are not the variant first detected in India, now known as the Delta variant, believed to have become the dominant strain in the UK.

Children at Woodside Junior School in Hethersett help get the message out. Photo: Archant

Diane Steiner, Norfolk's deputy public health director. - Credit: Archant

Diane Steiner, Norfolk’s deputy director of public health, said: “In Norfolk, our numbers remain below the national average, and we maintain a robust response to cases and outbreaks in order to try to keep those numbers as low as possible.

"We are aware that the Breckland area is seeing a higher number of cases than elsewhere in Norfolk and we are managing a few outbreaks in the area.

"We are responding appropriately to limit the spread of the virus in the area.

"If anyone has Covid symptoms we would urge them to get a test, and if anyone has been identified as a contact of a case they should also book a PCR test online or by calling 119.”

Thetford North is one of only seven areas out of 110 across Norfolk showing three or more cases in the seven days up to May 29.

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