'Think about other people': Wakefield public health urges caution over Covid

People should think of others and "exercise caution" around Covid amid an increase in cases, Wakefield's director of public health has said.

By David Spereall
Friday, 18th March 2022, 10:26 am
Updated Friday, 18th March 2022, 10:29 am

Anna Hartley said that although all remaining restrictions had been lifted, the public should be mindful of the risk they pose to vulnerable people if they or others in their household had the virus.

The Mid Yorkshire Hospitals NHS Trust, which runs Pinderfields Hospital, said last week it was now treating more than 50 Covid patients, following an increase from the end of February.

Ms Hartley said that society had to get back to some "semblance of normality" and that "risks" linked to that and bringing back restrictions had to be "balanced".

Ms Hartley said the infection rate would "inevitably" rise, following the end of restrictions.

But she added: "When you stop all restrictions, people mix. We've been here before.

"And because Covid is really infectious, people will get Covid.

"I think inevitably we’ll see the infection rate go up. The more people get Covid, the more vulnerable people will be admitted to hospital and that is of course a concern.

"Exercise caution. It’s about thinking about other people and reducing the risk you’re posing to other people as much as possible.

Ms Hartley said she hoped the warmer months ahead would help in the battle against Covid, with viruses generally less infectious in the summer.

"We know the majority of people in hospital are unvaccinated.

"I know people must be fed up of hearing this, but the most important message is still 'Get vaccinated' and once five to 11 year-olds can get vaccinated, get your children vaccinated too."

Ms Hartley said she did not think Covid restrictions would be reintroduced unless the NHS started to be overwhelmed once again.

She added the assessment would effectively boil down to, "Can the person who has a heart attack living in Crofton go straight to Mid Yorkshire to be seen and can that ambulance arrive on time?

She added: "If you have loads of people in hospital with Covid and all the beds are full of Covid patients that’s not going to happen. It's all about balancing risk.

"But we’re coming into summer, when infections are generally lower.

"We just have to really, really cross our fingers and hope we don’t see lots of people getting admitted to hospital because that's the last thing we want."

Local Democracy Reporting Service