As England moves to step four of the government’s roadmap on Monday, 19 July, Sandwell Council reminds residents that cases are high and rising, and that they should act carefully and remain cautious while managing the risks.
Although most legal restrictions will be lifted at step four, and many people have been vaccinated, it is still possible to catch and spread Covid-19, even if you are fully vaccinated, and we are still in the third wave of the pandemic.
Dr Lisa McNally, Director of Public Health, said:
“Covid-19 has not gone away: it is still a deadly virus and infection rates continue to rise rapidly in Sandwell.
“I would particularly ask young people in the borough to consider their own safety, and that of their family, friends and colleagues. Because you are young, fit and healthy, there is the temptation to think that you might be invincible to Covid-19. But there is the risk that you could still be badly affected by the virus. Please carry on wearing face masks, and continue to take other sensible steps – such as getting vaccinated – as these protect your parents and grandparents too.
“We can all help reduce risks and protect our community by following these eight actions. Please do all you can to keep yourself, your loved ones and others safe.”
1. Get your jabs as soon as you can – make sure you get both doses. The vaccine is your best defence against the virus.
2. You will need both vaccine doses to travel to many countries. Fully vaccinated people returning to England from amber list countries will not need to quarantine.
3. You must self-isolate and book a PCR test if you develop symptoms.
4. Use rapid (lateral flow) tests twice a week. You can pick these up free from a number of pharmacies.
5. Always book a confirmatory PCR test if you test positive using a rapid test.
6. Continue wearing a face covering in shops, on public transport and in communal areas of flats.
7. Keep washing your hands regularly.
8. Remember, outside is safest for meet-ups.
Dr McNally said:
“Covid-19 will be a feature of our lives for the foreseeable future, so we all need to learn to live with it and manage the risk to ourselves and others. So please take care. The more people you meet and the closer you get to people you don’t live with, the higher the risk of catching and spreading Covid-19.”
Superintendent Phil Asquith, from Sandwell Police, said:
“During lockdown, we saw the vast majority of people across the borough sticking to the rules and I want to thank people for that.
“With the end of restrictions, we really want to see people carrying on doing the right thing to protect themselves, their friends and families.
“I want people to know that I’ll be following Dr McNally’s advice and encouraging my teams to do the same. You will absolutely continue to see officers in Sandwell wearing masks and using their judgement on keeping a safe distance.”
To check the latest advice on Covid-19, visit: www.gov.uk/coronavirus