Central Bedfordshire records 'massive' increase in weekly Covid infections - but what are the figures for Leighton Buzzard and Linslade?
There were 5,116 new cases in the district in the week up to January 2
New cases of Covid-19 have soared in Central Bedfordshire, with the area recording 5,116 in the past week.
That is an extra 1,192 weekly cases compared to the previous figure, and described as a "massive increase" in Central Beds Council's weekly report on case numbers published this afternoon. Infections are highest among 30 to 39-year-olds and 40 to 49-year-olds but rising across most adult age groups. Once again it represents the highest ever weekly figures recorded and a rate of 1,739.6 cases per 100,000 of population (1,334.3 previous week).
The figures, which take data for the week ending January 2, show that Leighton Buzzard South had 292 new weekly infections (previously 196), Leighton Buzzard North 240 (previously 199) and Linslade had 175 (previously 173).
The full ward data is: Stotfold and Langford 295; Leighton Buzzard South 292; Cranfield and Marston Moretaine 292; Ampthill 269; Flitwick 268; Sandy 263; Arlesey 263; Leighton Buzzard North 240; Biggleswade North 219; Biggleswade South 211; Shefford 197; Dunstable Northfields 194; Houghton Hall 186; Dunstable Icknield 177; Toddington 175; Linslade 175; Dunstable Watling 168; Caddington 148; Potton 132; Tithe Farm 104; Dunstable Manshead 99; Dunstable Central 90; Houghton Conquest and Haynes 88; Aspley and Woburn 86; Silsoe and Shillington 82; Parkside 80; Heath and Reach 77; Westoning, Flitton and Greenfield 67; Barton-le-Clay 64; Northill 61; Eaton Bray 53.
Central Beds Council has reported that the number of people in hospital has increased again and there were three deaths in the last reporting week.
In neighbouring authorities there were 3,017 new cases in Bedford (up 774), 3,590 in Luton (up 1,190) and 5,199 in Milton Keynes (up 1,366). There were also three deaths reported in Bedford, two in Luton and two in Milton Keynes.
The NHS has delivered 153,565 boosters in Central Bedfordshire, which means more than three-quarters of eligible people in the area have had their booster.
A council spokesman said: “Although Omicron causes less severe disease than previous variants, as many as 90 per cent of those in intensive care with Covid have not had their booster and over 60 per cent have not had any vaccination at all.
“Hospital admissions are rising, and our local hospitals are under increasing strain. We are experiencing the fastest growth in COVID cases that we have ever known, and case rates are now rising among the older and more vulnerable, with the obvious risk that this will continue to increase the pressures on our NHS.”
"The Government has decided to continue with Plan B for another three weeks, with a further review before the regulations expire on 26 January. This means: carry on working from home whenever you can; wear face coverings on public transport and in most indoor public places; take a test before going to high-risk venues or meeting the elderly or vulnerable and get vaccinated."