Earlier this week the Prime Minister announced a new three-tier coronavirus restriction system, which comes into place today (Wednesday, 14 October).
I hope this message finds you well.
Following the Prime Minister’s announcement earlier this week regarding the new three-tier system which comes into place today (Wednesday, 14 October) I would like to reassure you that Medway is in the ‘Medium’ risk category, which is lowest of the three. There is no Low Risk category, which reflects the fact that the risk to our health still remains, and will do so for the foreseeable future.
This means that we are not currently facing any further restrictions, other than those already currently in place such as the rule of six, hospitality venues closing at 10pm with table service only and residents encouraged to work from home, if they can.
However, we are facing a most critical time here in Medway. Thanks to your action and vigilance we have not seen the growth in number of cases seen in the north of the country. But numbers nationally are growing fast and it is vital that every single one of us ensures we stick to the rules to avoid us moving into higher tiers with the additional restrictions this would impose on our lives. Numbers of infections are growing in Medway, which means we must continue to be aware of the rules and of the way we interact with others.
With winter fast approaching this is even more important so we can protect our colleagues in the NHS and the pressure increased cases would put on our hospitals and medical professionals. Let’s protect ourselves, the vulnerable members of our families, and our communities this winter and do our bit to keep Medway safe.
We will make sure that our outbreak management plans are in line with the government’s latest announcements and we will continue to work with Public Health England, local protection teams and the NHS to monitor where coronavirus cases are occurring and to identify any community outbreaks so we can take suitable and necessary action.
To help us keep you safe, anyone experiencing coronavirus symptoms is encouraged to self-isolate immediately and book a test.
We must all act to continue to save lives and protect our loved ones and keep the number of cases in Medway as low as possible.
Test and Trace Support Payment
This week we have announced how residents can apply for the NHS Test and Trace Support Payment and I would encourage residents who have been told to self-isolate by NHS Test and Trace to do so. I am pleased that the government has introduced the support payment to help residents on lower incomes who may face financial difficulties if they need to self-isolate.
If you have been told to self-isolate by NHS Test and Trace since 28 September, and meet the qualifying criteria, you can apply for the £500 payment online. If you know someone who has been told to self-isolate but does not have access to the internet, they can call 01634 306000 to speak to an officer who will help them with their application.
COVID-19 Community Champions
I have spoken often of our fantastic Medway community spirit and we are currently reaching out to our communities and encouraging them to sign up to become COVID-19 Community Champions. The champions will share the latest government advice and coronavirus guidance with their local community, family, friends, neighbours and in their workplaces to advise others about how to stay safe during the ongoing pandemic. We want to make sure that everyone in Medway knows what the latest advice and guidance is and we want our community champions to help us share that message.
The community champions will receive regular updates and calls from our public health team. If you would like to volunteer, or find out more information, please email email@example.com
Please continue to protect yourself and others. We will get through this together.
Cllr Alan Jarrett
Leader of Medway Council