WITH COVID-19 restrictions set to be fully removed by June 21, Cumbria’s public health director has expressed concerns about the Delta variant and rising cases of the virus.

Director of public health for Cumbria Colin Cox said: “It’s probably worth flagging that in Cumbria we’ve seen a near doubling of cases in a week, mostly associated with the Delta variant.”

The county’s health chief expects to see the plan to lift all Coronavirus restrictions on June 21 scaled back in some way.

“We’re expecting an announcement on Monday. I think the Government has been dropping hints that it’s not going to be the big easing that it was going to be.”

Mr Cox believes that it would be the right decision to leave some measures in place.

“I have to say I do. I think given the cases rising and it’s a new variant we’re still learning about, I would actually be quite surprised if the unlocking happens in full.”

He has concerns about the number of Covid-19 cases in Cumbria.

“While they’re low compared to England and the North West they have gone up dramatically in the last week, I am concerned about that, we are keeping on top of it as much as we possibly can but it’s a real challenge.”

He added that many of the new cases are coming from people who are travelling for work or leisure.

“That’s what’s driving things at the minute. I think it’s important people give some serious thought about what they want to do. The cases that we’re seeing in Cumbria are not people breaking rules, generally speaking people are following the rules and still able to pick it up because the rules are relaxed.”

Cumbria has seen 83 cases of Coronavirus in the last seven days which means the virus is reproducing at a rate of 16.6 per 100,000 people in the population.
Eden has seen 20 cases in the last seven days, a rate of 37.6 per 100,000 people.
Copeland saw 14 new cases of Covid-19 in that period, a rate of 20.5 per 100,000 population. Allerdale recorded 17 cases of Coronavirus, a rate of 17.4 per 100,000 people.
It was announced yesterday by secretary of state for health and social care Matt Hancock that 91 per cent of new UK cases are of the Delta variant. The so called Delta variant is a mutant strain of Covid-19 originating in India.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson has travelled to Cornwall for the G7 summit with the intention of urging the six other world leaders to join the Covax programme.

The global effort looks to share supplies of the vaccine with other nations to curb variants and protect the most vulnerable in impoverished countries.