Coronavirus (COVID-19) is spreading fast in Swindon. The Great Western Hospital (GWH) is today treating more COVID-19 patients than at any point in the pandemic so far.
That’s over 120 coronavirus patients including those in intensive care.
The GWH is battling with COVID-19 alongside all the existing 24/7 emergency health needs of our community, including residents suffering heart attacks, in need of cancer treatments or involved in road traffic accidents. For the first time this week, the hospital has had to cancel some non-urgent inpatient appointments.
The new variant of the virus is 50 to 70% more transmissible (spreadable) and we continue to see case numbers in Swindon rise – more than ten times where they were at the peak last August when Swindon was on the Government’s watchlist.
Swindon has seen 1,772 new COVID-19 cases in the last seven days, up from 725 new cases last Friday (01 January). Swindon's seven-day rolling average case rate today is 642.2 per 100,000, the national average case rate is 636.6 per 100,000 and 383.4 per 100,000 in the South West.
The national lockdown currently in place follows a real risk that our NHS could be overwhelmed with the demands of treating a rising number of coronavirus patients, alongside all our usual treatment needs this winter.
Now more than ever: to show we value our NHS workers, recognise the tough job they’re doing and the life-saving and enhancing services they provide to us, we all need to follow the ‘Stay at home’ rules.
The single most important action we can all take is to stay at home to protect the NHS and save lives.