Covid News

From:Carolyn Otley, Community Resilience Coordinator, Cumbria Association, of Local Councils

Date: 31 December 2021

You may well have seen in the news that Coronavirus case rates have shot up in Cumbria - along with almost everywhere else in the country, and we've seen the highest weekly total yet (but bear in mind that testing is now much more widely available than it was earlier in the pandemic).

The press release is here:

https://news.cumbria.gov.uk/News/2021/covid19casemorethandoubleinworstweeksofar.aspx

And the full set of slides is here:

https://www.cumbria.gov.uk/elibrary/Content/Internet/535/17941/17942/17945/4455916312.pdf

As Colin's quote in the press release explains, the most obvious impact of this is the number of people who are being required to self-isolate, which (as well as disrupting many people's plans for the holiday period) means that many essential services are finding staffing a challenge.

The most significant recent change to guidance is that people who have tested positive for Coronavirus can end their self-isolation on day 7, so long as they have negative LFTs on days 6 & 7 - full guidance here:

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/covid-19-stay-at-home-guidance/stay-at-home-guidance-for-households-with-possible-coronavirus-covid-19-infection

Again, as you might well have noticed, this has led to an increase in demand for lateral flow kits, and supply is still a bit patchy - but the message is once again to just keep trying, from either local pharmacies or off the gov.uk website - they're restocked frequently, if not necessarily predictably:

https://www.gov.uk/order-coronavirus-rapid-lateral-flow-tests

It shouldn't currently be necessary to get a "collect code" to pick up lateral flow kits from a pharmacy, but it does still seem to be being asked for in places - you can get one via the gov.uk website:

https://test-for-coronavirus.service.gov.uk/collect-lateral-flow-kits

We're also aware that it's not always easy to book a PCR test at the moment due to high levels of demand, and that it is sometimes taking several days to get results through - again, this is simply due to high levels of demand, and it's worth trying again a short while later. Slots are sometimes also available without an appointment at the walk-through testing centres, although booking is preferred.

See the latest updates from Alston Moor Health 

If you're feeling lonely or cut off and would like someone to chat to over the phone, why not register with the Alston Moor Phone Friends Scheme on 01434 647247 who will put you in touch with others who would welcome a friendly voice. Share isolation stories, activities and what you've done today with a friend you may not have met yet.

If you're out of money, please get in touch with Alston Food Bank who are there to help you. Your food will be delivered along with the deliveries in the normal way that everyone else is getting their food, so your personal circumstances are kept private. Please don't hesitate if you need the Food Bank's support. You can phone us on 07890 345901 or email alstonfoodbank@gmail.com 

If you're struggling to pay council tax, rent, etc, please contact Lissie Sharp on 07917 714650