This week to 13 October, there were 2,195 new confirmed cases of COVID 19 in Somerset. As we have repeatedly warned, there is no evidence for a decline in cases in Somerset. Nothing that has happened in the last few weeks suggests anything other than numbers are broadly steady.

The table below tracks the overall weekly number of infections in Somerset in recent weeks.

  • 2.195 to 13 October
    2,260 to 6 October
  • 1,876 to 29 September
  • 1,453 to 22 September
  • 1,432 to 15 September
  • 2,148 to 8 September
  • 2,132 to 1 September
  • 2,763 to 25 August
  • 1,911 to 18 August
  • 1,481 to 11 August
  • 1,407 to 4 August
  • 1,285 to 28 July
  • 2,056 to 21 July
  • 989 to 14 July
  • 470 to 7 July

This week there are several COVID hotspots around the county. Although case numbers are not that high in all cases, 12 areas of Somerset show over 500 cases per 100,000 people. For is one of those. Similar to last week it reported 51 new cases.

Once again Frome (and the surrounding area is the centre of the current outbreak. With 225 cases this week Frome has the second highest number of cases and highest cases per 100,000 people in Somerset. The highest case numbers were reported for Taunton with 289 new cases. Elsewhere Bridgwater reported 168 new cases and Yeovil 165.

Before we go any further however, our usual health warning about the figures.  Unlike NHS data these numbers include care homes and incidences of COVID 19 “at home”. The data is prepared to 13 October for cases (although different dates are used for some of the other figures – for instance deaths are reported to 1 October). The reason for this delay is to keep the numbers accurate – or should we say as accurate as possible. The daily totals published by the NHS are subject to constant revision, as not unreasonably, the data is constantly being updated to improve accuracy. It is also worth noting that the SCC area does not include North Somerset (so Weston hospital) or BANES (So the RUH in Bath) both of which are separate administrative areas.

In the last fortnight there has been an uptick in the number of deaths recorded from COVID 19. This is a more worrying trend as numbers of deaths had been relatively small since the end of the last lockdown in July. We continue to monitor these figures closely. There were four deaths this week, 3 were in hospital and 1 in a care home.

Although the number of hospitalisations remains low, we are reminded that this is not necessarily the full picture. The numbers in hospital split between Taunton and Yeovil hospitals remain under 30. However as the current centre of the outbreak locally is in Frome, that is not surprising. The majority of hospitalisations that were necessary for Frome residents would be in the RUH in Bath.

The R number is still reported at 0.8-1.1 which looks much loser to reality than the number reported last week. However as case numbers are not falling, any number below 1 makes little sense.

The most worrying figures this week remain for vaccinations of the under 18 cohort. This is still proceeding at a snail’s pace. This week just 334 under 18’s were vaccinated. That was better than the 268 last week but really this does not look to us to be good enough.

As ever here is the full dataset so you can form your own conclusions:

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