A CORONAVIRUS outbreak has been confirmed at a nursing home near Hereford.
Herefordshire Council said the Covid-19 was at the Weir Nursing Home in Swainshill, but all care providers across the county had “been excellent in the way they work” with officials when a cluster of cases were found.
The council said that since Christmas, Herefordshire has seen its highest rates of Covid-19 cases since the pandemic began and there has been an increase in cases across all ages and across all parts of the county.
Herefordshire’s acting director of public health Dr Rebecca Howell-Jones said: “There have been a number of clusters and outbreaks in a range of settings including households, workplaces and care homes.
“Locally and across the country, we know that care homes are particularly vulnerable to outbreaks and hence the prioritisation of care home residents and staff for vaccination.
“I want to thanks those working in the county’s care sector for everything they are doing to look after residents and those receiving care at home during these difficult times.
“When an outbreak has occurred, care providers have been excellent in the way they work with public health teams, local authority commissioners and other partners to act quickly and effectively to reduce transmission.
“The Covid-19 rates in Herefordshire, although high, remain well below the national average thanks to the community effort across the county and everyone has a part to play in helping to reduce transmission of the virus.
“I want to remind people to follow the Stay Home guidance and if you do need to leave home please wear a face covering in public indoor spaces and shops; keep two metres from others and wash your hand thoroughly and regularly.”
The council did not say how many cases had been confirmed at the home, which provides personal and nursing care for up to 35 people.
The Weir Nursing Home declined to comment.
The infection rate for the over-90s in Herefordshire has risen from 42.2 cases per 100,000 in the seven days to December 13 to 1,011.8 in the week to January 13, according to public health data on the Government website.
The website shows the rate of people with at least one positive Covid-19 test result, either lab-reported or lateral flow device, per 100,000 population in the rolling seven-day period, by age.
Individuals tested positive more than once are only counted once, on the date of their first positive test.
For the 85 to 89 age group, the infection rate had risen from 25.2 on December 13 to 428 a month later.
The infection rate for the 80 to 84 age group also rose, with the figures rising from 30.4 in the seven days to December 13, to 242.9 in the week to January 13.
Latest figures from the Office for National Statistics show there had been 74 coronavirus deaths in care homes registered in Herefordshire up to January 9.
The figures, published weekly, are based on where Covid-19 is mentioned anywhere on the death certificate. It does not give a location more specific than Herefordshire.
The data includes deaths up to January 1, but registered up to eight days later.