Friday 14 June 2024
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Nottinghamshire Public Health Director’s message on Keeping Safe from Covid this Christmas

A year ago, the first vaccines against Covid-19 were developed and they’ve made a real difference in our fight against this disease.

To meet this next challenge, we need to take full advantage of the protection that the vaccines provide.  The campaign to offer booster vaccines to every adult in the country is underway and already, thousands of people have come forward.

First and second doses are still available – it’s not too late.  Vaccines have been offered to everyone above the age of 12 and so far, over 1.7 million vaccines have been administered across Nottingham and Nottinghamshire. Getting a vaccination remains our best protection against Covid-19, by significantly reducing the risk of severe illness or death.

We’re just a day away from Christmas and we had all hoped that things would be different this year. No-one wanted to be in this situation – facing yet another variant of Covid-19 and living with more restrictions.

We’ve seen the number of Covid-19 cases rise, fall and rise again as we’ve dealt with different variants. The virus has caused disruption to our plans, it’s affected our mental health and well-being and made some of us and our loved ones extremely ill. During 2021, the virus has had a severe impact on our children’s education, local business and communities.

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Covid-19 continues to present real challenges for those working to limit its effects, while protecting our health and care services. However, there are things that we can each do to slow its transmission and protect ourselves and others.

As well as getting vaccinated, it’s important that if you experience even mild symptoms of Covid-19 you get a PCR test immediately and self-isolate if the result is positive. Regular rapid testing is also crucial because it means we can check if we’re clear of Covid-19, and make sure that when we’re meeting people, we are not unwittingly passing the infection on to them. This year, over 686,000 LFD and PCR tests have been completed or collected for home testing by our residents.

Wearing face coverings, washing hands regularly, meeting outdoors where possible or letting plenty of fresh air into our homes when we’re entertaining can all help to make it harder for Covid-19 to take hold. I’d encourage everyone in Nottinghamshire to continue doing everything possible to slow Covid-19 in its tracks.

And I’d like to thank you for what you have been doing to protect yourselves, those around you and the health and care services across the county.

Wishing you a Happy Christmas and best wishes for 2022.

Jonathan Gribbin,
Nottinghamshire Director of Public Health

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