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A message to our older communities in Bromsgrove, from Dr. Kathryn Cobain, Director for Public Health in Worcestershire

A message to the older communities in Bromsgrove from Dr. Kathryn Cobain.

“Since March, we have all worked hard to reduce the spread of Coronavirus. I want to thank you for all you have done so far, to keep us all safe. Sadly, our number of Covid-19 positives is rising once again. We have seen the virus spread through our younger people and now it is infecting our older communities. This is certainly happening in Bromsgrove and it is very worrying. We know that the over 60’s can be badly affected by the virus, it can make you very poorly, need hospital care and even cause death. This of course, leads to pressure on our NHS and creates a rising demand for intensive care beds. We need to act now, to prevent this situation becoming any worse. We need your help, to keep you and everyone safe. 

How can you help?  How can you protect yourself and others ?  Firstly, please follow the rule of 6, keep your distance, wash your hands regularly and wear face coverings where needed. These measures are our best defence against the virus. We know it can be hard, keeping a distance from others, avoiding travelling to places, not meeting up with big groups. But the virus spreads when we mix and have contact and don’t stay apart. Stay local, don’t visit areas with higher levels of restrictions. In Bromsgrove, we are close to areas with higher infection rates and these areas are on a higher level of alert. If we can stay local, stop visiting areas with greater numbers of infections, we can protect ourselves and others. Please ensure you self-isolate as soon as you have a symptom of Covid-19. The symptoms to look out for are; 
•    a high temperature – this means you feel hot to touch on your chest or back (you do not need to measure your temperature)
•    a new, continuous cough – this means coughing a lot for more than an hour, or 3 or more coughing episodes in 24 hours (if you usually have a cough, it may be worse than usual)
•    a loss or change to your sense of smell or taste – this means you’ve noticed you cannot smell or taste anything, or things smell or taste different to normal

If you have any of these, no matter how mild your symptoms, please self-isolate immediately and book a test. You can do this online https://www.gov.uk/get-coronavirus-test
Self-isolation means you should stay away from everyone, not go out, don’t leave your home, don’t mix with others. Self-isolation is not the same as lockdown. If you have a symptom you should not go out for exercise, you need to stay at home, and away from those you live with, so you don’t pass on the virus. If you have no family support or help with things such as shopping or getting medicines our Here 2 Help service is available to support you as you self-isolate. You can contact them through our website; https://www.worcestershire.gov.uk/here2help

I know the situation is difficult, and I want to thank you for all you are doing. 
Please take care of yourself, follow the rules and stay safe. 

Dr. Kathryn Cobain. “