Coronavirus cases drop again in South Yorkshire town as announcement on new tiers expected

Coronavirus cases have dropped in Barnsley, ahead of new tier announcements expected this week.

Monday, 14th December 2020, 12:30 pm

Currently, there are 24 cases in Barnsley, down from 280 at its peak on October 19.

Julia Burrows, director of public health for Barnsley, said cases are now “slowing down and levelling out”, although cases are rising in those aged over 65.

Ms Burrows added: “We know that the pressure on Barnsley Hospital is not getting better, so combined, this puts Barnsley in a rather precarious position as we move towards the Christmas period when more household mixing will take place and people are affected by the usual winter illnesses.”

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Julia Burrows, director of public health for Barnsley

Dan Jarvis, Barnsley Central MP and Mayor of the Sheffield City Region, said its is “highly likely” that South Yorkshire will remain in Tier 3, following the government’s announcement on December 17, as four out of the five key indicators for moving to a lower tier are still high. `

Ms Burrows is hopeful that a community testing programme will help stop the spread of the virus, through testing those with no symptoms.

Ms Burrows added: “This additional resource will allow us to selectively test asymptomatic residents and workers, meaning that we can identify positive cases and give them the right advice and support.

“These cohorts have been prioritised on the criteria of close contact, multiple contact, and vulnerable contact groups – for example, service critical frontline staff, people working in high-risk groups and vulnerable groups.

“We are actively planning the delivery, resourcing and estimated costs of providing the additional testing to allow us to begin this programme as soon as possible.

In these confusing and worrying times, local journalism is more vital than ever. Thanks to everyone who helps us ask the questions that matter by taking out a digital subscription or buying a paper. We stand together. Nancy Fielder, editor.