Posted: 10.05.20 at 13:55 by Nick Hudson
ATHERSTONE’S eight recorded deaths from Covid-19 comes in an official total of 161 lab-confirmed cases of the virus across North Warwickshire.
Newly-released figures put the cases of people testing positive in the district at a rate of nearly 250 per 100,00 population.
The statistics are revealed in additional information on ‘lower tier’ local authorities provided by the Government via the Office for National Statistics as yesterday saw the 100th day since the first case of coronavirus was reported in the UK.
The borough sits fourth out of nine in terms of cases per 100,000 among the neighbouring local council areas bordering Atherstone.
North Warwickshire’s case rate of 248.3 per 100,000 population is higher than the Warwickshire figure of 228.2, and England (241.1) while on a par with the West Midlands at 249.4. The UK figure of 317.1 per 100,000 population is bumped up by a Welsh rate of 354.
Solihull tops the cases per 100,000 table for authorities around Atherstone’s North Warwickshire borough at 284.3. It has recorded a total of 611 Covid cases.
Close neighbours Nuneaton and Bedworth have reported 362 cases at the second highest rate of 280.8 per 100,000 population.
With the inclusion of population, recorded cases and rate per 100,000 population, the full table of authorities which have a boundary touching North Warwickshire reads:
Solihull (population 214,909): Cases 611, at rate of 284.3 cases per 100,000;
Nuneaton & Bedworth (pop 128,902): Cases 362, at rate of 280.8 cases per 100,000;
Birmingham (pop 1.08 million): Cases 3,075, at rate of 269.4 cases per 100,000;
North Warwickshire (pop 64,850): Cases 161, at rate of 248.3 cases per 100,000;
Lichfield (pop 103,965:) Cases: 251, at rate of 241.4 cases per 100,000;
Coventry (pop 325,949):Cases 742, at rate of 202.3 cases per 100,000;
Tamworth (pop 76,678 ): Cases 157, at rate of 204.8 cases per 100,000;
North West Leicestershire (pop 102,126): Cases 136, at rate of 133.2 cases per 100,000;
Hinckley & Bosworth (pop 112,423): Cases 213, at rate of 189.5 cases per 100,000.
A table of upper tier authorities, neighbouring and including Warwickshire, reads:
West Midlands (population 5.90 million): Cases: 14,719, at rate of 249.4 per 100,000;
Warwickshire(pop 571,010): Cases: 1,303, at rate of 228.2 per 100,000;
Staffordshire (pop 875,2190: Cases 1,949, at rate of 222.7 per 100,000;
Leicestershire (pop 698,268): Cases 1,036, at rate of 148.4 per 100,000
Earlier in the week Nub News revealed Atherstone ranks alongside its big city neighbours Birmingham for the worst Covid mortality rate in nine neighbouring local authorities.
The eight people who have lost their lives to the virus puts the town at a current rate of 75 deaths per 100,000, according to the Office for National Statistics, with only Birmingham above on 78.
The figures are relevant for coronavirus deaths between March 1 and April 17.
North Warwickshire, which finds itself surrounded by no fewer than eight other adjoining Midland authorities, has recorded 24 deaths in that timescale – with an ONS mortality rate of 35 per 100,000.
The total of lab-confirmed UK cases of Covid-19 now stands at 215,260 which has risen by 3,896 in the last 24 hours of recording.
The UK death toll increased by 346 to 31,587 – the highest in Europe by more than 1,000 with Italy’s tally on 30,395 fatalities.
The release of the latest lower tier authority table comes as ministers have been warned the UK could suffer more than 100,000 deaths by the end of the year if the lockdown is lifted too quickly.
One of the goverment's scientific advisers has cautioned there is "very limited room to manoeuvre" after new modelling found tens of thousands could die if lockdown restrictions are eased too quickly.
The figures, which were sent to the government's Scientific Advisory Group on Emergencies (SAGE), came as Boris Johnson is expected to set out his "road map" to a new normality with some easing of restrictions and reopening the economy during a TV address on Sunday evening at 7pm.
But the modelling, carried out last week by researchers from the London School of Tropical Hygiene, Imperial College London and other research groups, concluded the death toll could soar unless aggressive steps were made to track the spread of the virus.
The group reportedly modelled a range of options for exiting lockdown "to evaluate which were viable and which were not", with more than one result putting the death toll over 100,000.
The Prime Minister is expected to unveil a coronavirus warning system which will tell the country to "stay alert, control the virus and save lives", urging workers who cannot do their jobs from home to begin returning to their workplaces while following social-distancing rules.
"This is the dangerous bit," he warned ahead of the announcement.
It is understood that a warning system administered by a new "joint biosecurity centre" will detect local increases in infection rates, with the view to locally alter restrictions in England.
With the alerts ranging from green in level one to red in level five, Mr Johnson is expected to say the nation is close to moving down from four to three.
Meanwhile, British Retail Consortium chief executive Helen Dickinson has said the Government must decide which shops to reopen based on “safety” rather than considering their size or mode of business.
Ms Dickinson said she expects a "gradual lifting" of lockdown measures, with retail workers returning to their jobs some time after schools reopen.
She expects the Prime Minister’s road map to include practical measures similar to her organisation's guidance for staff and customer safety.
The guidance published last month includes limiting entry and exit points, using floor markings to outline social distancing, staggered shifts and restricting the number of people in shops.
One ‘easing’ measure that has been leaked is the reported reopening of garden centres from Wednesday.
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