An open letter from Cllr Neil Moore, Leader of the Council, and Health Board Partners
This is a Coronavirus alert, cases in the Vale of Glamorgan are rising fast
The increasing numbers of Covid-19 case numbers across Cardiff and the Vale of Glamorgan Health Board area could not be any more serious or alarming.
Therefore, this message needs to be acted upon urgently and be seen as a warning to each and every one of us about the seriousness of the health situation we are all now facing.
If current projections continue, then by Christmas week we will be seeing more than four times the number of new infections each day, than we were seeing at the start of December. These projected figures are the highest we have ever seen in this County and are likely to reach almost 1,000 cases per 100,000 in the seven-day period up until Christmas Day. If you compare that with the figure of 50 cases per 100,000 when we entered the local lockdown, you can see how serious the current situation is. We can no longer be complacent.
We know from the first and second waves that as case numbers increase, more people get seriously unwell, and we will inevitably see more deaths from Coronavirus - many of which can be avoided, if we act now.
We are deeply concerned that hospitals and primary care services across Cardiff and the Vale of Glamorgan are now under unsustainable pressure due to COVID-19, and sadly, but inevitably, the number of people who are becoming very sick is increasing daily.
Each and every one of us has a responsibility to act now. We must all follow Welsh Government coronavirus regulations, but if you can also take further actions to protect those you love, then we urge you to do so.
We should not meet with anyone outside our household bubble and keep contact with people outside our household to an absolute minimum until the current threat has passed, but especially in the run-up to Christmas.
We know that staying away from loved ones will be painful for many, especially at this time of year, but if we do this now, we will be doing everything we can to protect our family and friends for the months to come.
We know many people think that the vaccine is going to become more widely available, so everything is going to be okay. Regrettably, that is simply not the case. If we don’t change our behaviour now, many people will die before the vaccine is rolled out, people who don’t need to die, possibly people who you know.
The full roll out of the vaccine will take many months, so now is not the time to be complacent. Very few of us are immune and the virus is still prevalent in our communities and our hospitals. By practising social distancing, washing our hands regularly and wearing face coverings we will all be doing our bit to help.
So, our message is simple.
- Wash your hands regularly or if you can’t do that use sanitiser hand gel.
- Please try and stay at home and only go out for essential reasons and if it is essential to go out, please do so in quieter periods.
- If you do go out, wear a mask when required and keep socially distanced by at least 2 metres, wherever possible.
- Please do not mix with other households or your friends.
- Work from home, if you can do so.
- If you develop symptoms such as a new and continuous cough, a temperature, or a loss of taste or smell please self-isolate with your household and arrange a test.
These small steps can really help us all to keep our communities safe.
As a Health Board and Council, we are fully mobilised in the fight against COVID-19. Doing so continues to be a huge challenge and is one that we will best achieve, if we do it together, just as we did in the Spring.
We are asking every one of you to achieve this challenge together.
Let’s stop the spread, and let’s keep the Vale of Glamorgan, the NHS and our loved ones safe.
Cllr Neil Moore
Vale of Glamorgan Council
Executive Director of Public Health
Cardiff & Vale University Health Board
Cardiff & Vale University Health Board