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Coronavirus: Haringey isn’t facing lockdown, council confirms after flawed reports

PUBLISHED: 11:06 03 July 2020 | UPDATED: 11:16 03 July 2020

In the week of June 22-28 Haringey's rate of Covid-19 cases per 100,000 people was three. Picture: Jonathan Brady/PA

In the week of June 22-28 Haringey's rate of Covid-19 cases per 100,000 people was three. Picture: Jonathan Brady/PA

PA Wire/PA Images

Haringey Council has rightly refuted national newspaper reports – based on flawed data – which suggested the borough was facing a local lockdown.

Haringey was listed in national media coverage, widely reproduced from an article in the Daily Telegraph, as one of 36 local authorities that could go into lockdown, as Leicester has.

However, data from Public Health England shows Haringey’s rate of cases per 100,000 people in the week of June 22 to 28 was three, meaning 95 of the 150 local authorities in England had a higher rate of Covid-19.

The week before it was 2.6, showing there was no spike.

In comparison, Leicester, where a local lockdown was announced on June 29, had a Covid-19 case rate of 140.

Dr Will Maimaris, Haringey Council's director of public health. Picture: Dr Will MaimarisDr Will Maimaris, Haringey Council's director of public health. Picture: Dr Will Maimaris

Dr Will Maimaris, Haringey Council’s director of public health, said: “We have no community outbreaks of Covid-19 in Haringey.

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“The overall number of cases is very low (around 1 new case a day on average), so overall risk of being exposed to Covid-19 in Haringey is still low and much lower than other parts of the country.

“There is always some fluctuation in case numbers from week to week, but this is from a very low base and within the realms of what we would expect. We will continue to monitor the situation.”

The public health data used in national newspaper reports only covered ‘Pillar 1’ results. These are tests from hospitals and those carried out on NHS and care staff.

‘Pillar 2’ data includes test results from the wider population and regional centres, and therefore gives a more detailed and balanced picture of Covid-19 infections.

A combination of both Pillar 1 and 2 data is required by the government and public health authorities when making decisions on local lockdowns.

Dr Maimaris continued: “While it is reassuring that that the number of new cases of COVID-19 continues to be low in Haringey, we must ensure we work together to keep it this way, by following public health guidance and acting with care and caution as we support our local businesses and schools to continue to open up.”

Haringey Council recently published its Covid-19 local outbreak management plan, outlining how it will prevent and manage outbreaks in the borough.

To read the plan click here.


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