Shallower drop in region’s Covid cases as routine public testing set to come to an end

A further, shallower decline in new Covid-19 cases has been recorded in Dumfries and Galloway.

By Brian Yule
Thursday, 14th April 2022, 10:55 am
Updated Thursday, 14th April 2022, 10:55 am
Most routine public testing for people who don’t have symptoms of Covid will come to an end next week. Picture Scott Merrylees
Most routine public testing for people who don’t have symptoms of Covid will come to an end next week. Picture Scott Merrylees

For the week ending April 10 there were 1158 new cases, down from 1434 the week before, but a smaller drop than from the 1889 the week before that.

Consultant in Public Health Dr Andrew Rideout said: “Any decline in Covid-19 cases is welcome, but this is a smaller drop than we saw last week.

“We know Covid is still present right throughout our region, so we continue to ask people to do everything they can to reduce the risk of transmission.

“Wearing a face covering in indoor public settings helps to prevent people from unknowingly spreading Covid to others when they cough or sneeze.

“People may feel that they’re okay not to wear a face covering, as they don’t feel threatened by Covid.

"In reality, it’s less about protecting themselves than it is about protecting others, including those more vulnerable.

“We’d ask people not to be embarrassed to continue wearing a face covering, and invite everyone to recognise doing so as a sign of caring about other people’s health and wellbeing.”

Meanwhile, changes are taking place nationally around testing.

From April 18, most routine public testing for people who don’t have symptoms of Covid will come to an end, and access to Lateral Flow Device (LFD) kits for that purpose will stop.

Routine asymptomatic testing will cease in workplaces other than health and social care settings, and routine testing in education settings will end.

LFD testing will continue to be available in certain circumstances where testing will still be recommended, i.e. before visiting a care home or hospital.

From the end of April, testing of most people who are experiencing symptoms of Covid will end, moving to targeted testing for clinical care and to manage serious outbreaks.

Updated advice on what to do if experiencing symptoms of Covid-19 from the end of April is in development and will be communicated nationally and locally when available.

If you test positive on a LFD you do not need to get a confirmatory PCR test, however those testing positive should still record their results online as an under-reporting of cases locally may lead to a rise in the numbers of hospitalisations despite apparently falling numbers of cases.

Details on the stepping down of static and mobile testing at locations across the region by the end of the month will be carried at www.nhsdg.co.uk/testing

PCR testing will remain available until the end of April and until then the advice continues to be to isolate if you have symptoms of Covid and arrange a PCR test.

Dr Rideout added: “Changes in the way we manage Covid-19 do not mean it has gone away and it remains critically important that everybody ensures they are as fully vaccinated as possible.”

For information, visit www.nhsdg.co.uk/vaccines