Tier 3 in West Yorkshire: This is why Wakefield, Pontefract and Castleford will enter into Tier 3 restrictions when lockdown ends

The Wakefield district will enter into Tier 3 restrictions when lockdown comes to an end next month, it has been confirmed.

Friday, 27th November 2020, 10:40 am
Updated Friday, 27th November 2020, 10:43 am

But what is the current rate of Covid-19 in the district, and why was the decision made to enforce the strictest level of restrictions in the district?

Health Secretary Matt Hancock has laid out some of the reasoning behind the Tier decisions.

This is how and why the decision to enter Wakefield into Tier 3 lockdown was made.

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But what is the current rate of Covid-19 in the district, and why was the decision made to enforce the strictest level of restrictions in the district?

What is the current rate of infection in Wakefield?

To date, there have been 13,179 confirmed cases of Covid-19 in the Wakefield district, up from 8,349 at the start of the month.

According to NHS figures, the rate of cases is currently 275 per 100,000.

This marks a decline from 463 per 100,000 on November 18, but remains higher than the national rate of 168 per 100,000.

In a statement on Monday, Wakefield Council said there were 300 Covid-19 patients being cared for at hospitals run by the Mid Yorkshire Hospitals NHS Trust, compared to 324 the week before.

To date, 545 people have died at Mid Yorkshire Hospitals after testing positive for Covid-19.

Why will Wakefield go into Tier 3?

Under the old classification, Wakefield had been expected to enter into Tier 3: Very High earlier this month, but this was scrapped when the second national lockdown was announced.

Instead, the district, along with the rest of West Yorkshire. will enter into the new Tier 3, which the government has described as a "strengthened" version of the old system, from Wednesday, December 2.

In a written statement to Parliament on Thursday, Mr Hancock set out the reasoning behind the decision.

As part of the government's Covid-19 Winter Plan, there are five criteria used to decide which restrictions will be in place in each area.

These are: the rate of cases in all age groups; the rate of cases in the over-60s; the rate at which cases are rising or falling; the pressure on local NHS services and the positivity rate, which measures the number of positive cases detected as a percentage of tests taken.

Speaking about West Yorkshire, Mr Hancock wrote: "This area is improving with case rates falling in all 5 lower tier local authorities.

"However, case rates in all ages and rates in over 60s remain very high (389/100,000 and 312/100,000 respectively). Positivity is 13.9%."

Tier 3 restrictions will come into place from one minute past midnight on Wednesday, December 2, and will be reviewed every 14 days.

Additional rules will apply over the Christmas period.