Coronavirus – under extra measures

By Dr Wirin Bhatiani

We’ve finally had the news that none of us wanted to hear.

Strict new coronavirus restrictions have been introduced across Bolton after the local infection rate climbed sharply to 120 cases per 100,000 people. That’s up from just 15 cases a fortnight ago, which shows how quickly this virus can spread.

The borough now has the highest infection rate in the country, and this is one league table we do not want to top - especially when people’s health and livelihoods are at stake.

To slow the spread of the virus and to protect the most vulnerable:

  • All restaurants, cafes, bars and pubs are restricted to takeaway only.
  • Venues, including takeaways, will be required to close from 10pm to 5am.
  • The ban on meeting people you do not live with, unless in a support bubble, is now enforceable by law.

There are also restrictions on visiting care homes and hospitals.

This will be a huge disappointment for Bolton people; especially those who work in hospitality, who are missing family and friends or have loved ones in care homes or hospital.

It may feel like things were getting back to some kind of normal, but this is a stark reminder that coronavirus is not over. We cannot relax. What we do now is crucial.

Everyone needs to do their bit to protect themselves, their family and friends, and others from Covid, and to prevent even more restrictions being introduced.

We must all continue to wash our hands often, stay apart from people we do not live with and wear a face covering where required. These measures work.

Also: call 119, or book a test online, if you have any symptoms of coronavirus. These include a high temperature, a new continuous cough or a loss or change in your sense of taste or smell.

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