No coronavirus in Somerset – yet?

An update from the Public Health lead for Somerset County Council, Trudi Grant, gave reassurance this afternoon. She confirmed that to date only nine cases had been identified in the UK.

What was news was that none of them were in Somerset and in fact none in the south west region generally.

However she explained that the situation is developing rapidly and it can be quite hard to keep on top of the latest news. Ms Grant stressed that the virus was not a flu virus but a totally new strain but that to date there was no indication that it was mutating.

She stressed that the Public Health team at Somerset County Council were working with the NHS to ensure all the right processes were in place. If a case was identified in Somerset, she is confident it can be dealt with efficiently.

However she also stressed two important point for the public at large. Basic things that can be essential in stopping the spread of a disease that can transmit from moisture droplets when we sneeze.

First the importance of sneezing into a tissue and then immediately disposing of it hygienically.

Second, it is vitally important to wash hands (including the thumbs) regularly for at least 20 seconds in warm soapy water.

Post script

Just as Trudi Grant was making her announcement, it turns out that Frome medical centre were cordoning off part of their space after a suspected but unconfirmed case was reported. We must stress at this point that it is an unconfirmed case.

In a statement from Frome Medical Practise it was noted that: “Following guidance from Public Health England we have closed part of the practice today as a precautionary measure following an unconfirmed case of coronavirus. The practice is still open and able to see patients.

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