Hawick Covid-19 outbreak under control, say health chiefs, but cases in region up 25 in four days

Hawick’s coronavirus outbreak is now under control, according to health chiefs, but the number of cases of the disease confirmed in the region has shot up by 25 over the last four days.

By Darin Hutson
Tuesday, 15th September 2020, 2:43 pm
Updated Wednesday, 16th September 2020, 7:10 am
Ambulance service personnel at the coronavirus testing station at Hawick's Teviotdale Leisure Centre last week.
Ambulance service personnel at the coronavirus testing station at Hawick's Teviotdale Leisure Centre last week.

It has not been disclosed if any of those new cases are in Hawick, adding to the 23 infections confirmed there as of last Thursday, September 10.

Those new cases announced today, September 15, take the cumulative total for the Borders to 420 since the virus, also known as Covid-19, arrived here in March.

NHS Borders medical director Lynn McCallum said: “I am pleased to report that the recent outbreak in Hawick is no longer being managed as an active outbreak, and we thank everyone concerned for their co-operation with the public health advice issued.”

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Dr McCallum added: “Cases of Covid-19 in the Borders are to be expected.

“Although an increase of 20 recorded positive tests over the weekend appears to be quite a high number, it is important to note that there can be delays in tests being reported, which may cause jumps in the data.

“We are seeing increased numbers of cases of Covid-19 across Scotland, and the Borders is no different.

“What is really important is that people follow up-to-date advice and guidance in relation to infection prevention and control.

“The best way to protect yourself and your loved ones is to wear face coverings in enclosed spaces, avoid crowded places, clean hands and surfaces regularly, observe two-metre distancing and self-isolate and book a test if you have symptoms.

“If you develop any symptoms of Covid-19 – a new, continuous cough, a fever or high temperature of 37.8C or greateror a loss of, or change in, sense of smell or taste, you should self-isolate immediately and visit NHS Inform or phone 0800 028 2816 to book a test.

“Whilst you wait for your test all of your household members must self-isolate. This is really important to prevent potential spread of this highly contagious virus.”

The figure of 420 cumulative cases reported here today is up by five overnight and by 70 over the last month.

The running total of cases here stood at 350 from August 13 to August 21, but that latter date marked the end of a nine-day run without any further diagnoses of Covid-19, and daily rises of up to 12 have been reported since then.

It’s now been almost four weeks since a day went by without any new cases being announced.

Last week alone saw 29 new cases confirmed here, up from 384 on Monday, September 7, to 413 on Sunday, September 13, with a further seven following since then.

Sunday’s rise of a dozen cases, from 401 to 413, was the biggest jump overnight reported here – excluding a rise of 18 from 327 to 345 on June 15 attributable to figures from UK Government mobile testing units, regional testing centres and home self-testing kits being added to NHS Scotland laboratory results – since one of 30, from 110 to 130, on April 5.

It’s now two months since the virus added to the death toll it’s claimed in the region, however.

According to figures issued last week by the National Records of Scotland and due to be updated tomorrow, September 16, the number of fatalities linked to the disease remains at 74, as of a week ago on Sunday, as has been the case since Sunday, July 12.

Those fatalities, taking into account all deaths linked to coronavirus, not just among those previously tested and found to be infected, are among 4,231 nationwide measured by those criteria.

Nationwide, 23,016 people have tested positive for the disease, up 267 overnight.

It’s now well over six months since Scotland’s first official diagnosis of the disease was announced on Sunday, March 1, after spreading across the world from China, with the first two cases in the Borders following on Wednesday, March 11.