New figures released by Public Health England (PHE) show that the Borough Of Swale has seen 90 new COVID-19 cases in a week - one in six of all positive tests recorded in Kent as a whole.
This recent outbreak has seen the infection rate jump to more than 200 in three areas on the Isle Of Sheppey, compared to a county average (Kent and Medway) of 49.4 per hundred thousand.
Five of the island's wards appear in the Top 6 of the county's hotspots:-
Infection Rate Number of cases Weekly Rise
- 1. Sheerness East 239.6 16 10 (166.7%)
- 2. Sheppey East 231.1 20 10 (100.0%)
- 3. Minster South 222.3 24 14 (140.0%)
- 4. Minster North 172.2 11 6 (120.0%)
- 5. Kennington (Ashford) 7 9 5 (125.0%)
- 6. Sheerness West 5 9 -6 (-40.0%)
Kent County Council’s Director of Public Health, Andrew Scott-Clark, told SFM News that the situation is very concerning. "Cases are rising across the whole of Kent and Medway; however, we are seeing a worrying increase in cases across Swale and particularly on the Isle of Sheppey. There are a number of cases associated with residential settings, work-places and secondary schools and while some are contained outbreaks there may also be some community transmission, which is helping the virus to continue to spread. Therefore were urge the public in Swale to play their part by closely following social distancing, regular handwashing and the wearing of face coverings in public places to help keep the number of cases to a minimum.”
* The local numbers are still much lower than in areas such as Manchester (437.5) and Liverpool (642.5), where the tightest restrictions are already in place or are about to be introduced.