Coronavirus – Support for people & communities – June 18, 2021
We hope you’re safe and keeping well.
This week we have an update for you following the government’s announcement on Monday, about infection rates in the city, getting vaccinated and what you can do to help stop the spread.
An update on infection rates in Leeds
The latest Leeds infection rates have increased to 161.3 per 100,000, an 80% increase in the last 7 days. The Yorkshire and Humber average is 83.6 per 100,000 and the England average is now 77.5 per 100,000. Positivity rate has increased to 5.8% in Leeds. The over 60s rate has increased to 17.4 per 100,000. Hospitalisations and deaths in Leeds remain quite low, the main increases in new cases are in the 18-24 population.
The case rate rise is driven by the Delta variant (originating in India), with this being about 60% more transmissible, combined with the easing of restrictions.
It’s even more important now for everyone to remember that some people are still vulnerable, so we all need to play our part to prevent the spread of coronavirus, by joining the millions of people across the UK who have safely received their COVID-19 vaccination when you are invited.
Keep doing the basics of washing hands, wearing a mask and keeping your distance. Get tested regularly and isolate when needed. Check your neighbours are ok and let’s keep working #TogetherLeeds
Enhanced testing for parts of Leeds to tackle rise in COVID-19 cases
Some parts of Leeds experiencing a very sharp rise in cases of COVID-19, so residents will be offered an enhanced programme of community testing next week to help Leeds stay safe over the summer.
From Tuesday [June 22] residents in the Hyde Park and Headingley and Little London and Woodhouse areas who are not experiencing symptoms will be encouraged to get a free PCR test at one of three pop-up testing centres located at Cinder Moor on Woodhouse Lane, the Gryphon Centre at The University of Leeds and the Mandela Community Centre on Chapeltown Road.
Government announced on Monday (14 June), that Step 4 of the roadmap in England (originally planned for 21 June) will be paused for 4 weeks to 19 July, though the data will be reviewed after 2 weeks.
Some restrictions will still change from 21 June, including:
For further information, please visit: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/
To ensure we continue moving in the right direction and reduce the risk of COVID-19 everyone is urged to get tested. Testing remains an important part of the overall strategy to get our lives back to normal.
You can book a test here or ring 119 (for people with Covid symptoms). Lateral flow testing for everyone- more info here. For further information on testing sites in Leeds including walk up sites can be found on the Leeds CCG website here.
If you’re aged 18 or over, you can now book your Covid-19 vaccination. The first dose should give you good protection from three to four weeks after you’ve had it. You need two doses for stronger and longer lasting protection.
You may be able to book your COVID-19 vaccination appointments online now at https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/
From Monday over 40s will be texted asking them to rebook their second dose. Everyone will be able to book second doses at 8 weeks rather than 12.
Join the millions already vaccinated. Vaccination is the most important thing you can do to protect you and your community against serious illness.
Free peace-of-mind for unpaid carers.
A carer is someone who looks after a family member, partner or friend who otherwise couldn’t manage without their help because of illness, frailty, disability, a mental health problem or an addiction. The care that carers give is unpaid.
Many carers worry about what would happen to the person they care for if they were to have an accident themselves or were suddenly taken ill and as a result, were temporarily unable to carry out their caring role
The Carers Leeds Emergency Card is free of charge and is designed to be kept with you at all times, for example in a purse, bag, wallet, phone case or on a key ring. In an emergency you can show someone the card so that they will know that someone else relies on you. The card will include contact details of someone that you have spoken to and who has agreed to step in and take over caring for the person you care for. This will usually be family or friends.
What is a crisis or emergency?
A crisis or emergency is something that could not be planned for, which means you cannot carry out your caring role.
Please do not put Carers Leeds contact details on the card and please do not contact Carers Leeds in the event of an emergency.
You can have a Carers Leeds Emergency Card even if you:
- Don’t live with the person you care for
- Are not the only person providing care for someone
- Are caring for more than one person
- Are not related to the person you care for
You can request a Carers Leeds Emergency Card by using the form on this page https://www.carersleeds.org.uk/carers-leeds-emergency-card/ (scroll down the page to find the form)
Note: Should you have any difficulties please ring a member of administration team on 0113 246 8338 between 10am and 4pm Tuesday to Thursday.
This week aims to raise awareness of health issues – both physical and mental – that affect men and to help men to be be more aware of health problems they may have, or could develop, and to encourage them to talk about these and to seek help when they need it.
A particular theme this year is Men’s mental health and especially in relation to the pandemic. Even without Covid restrictions, many men feel unable to speak about their mental health so this week is a reminder that if you are struggling it’s ok to talk.
Get mental health support and advice: https://t.co/DraXXqP0rk?amp=1
For Mens Health Week Mentally Healthy Leeds have some Mens MOT manuals. These are a great reminder to Connect , be Active, take Notice, Discover new things and Offer something to the world. If you would like one of these wellbeing guides for men contact them and they can post one out to you
0113 248 4880 or firstname.lastname@example.org
The Government has today annouced a delay of 4 weeks before the final stage of lockdown easing, meaning that most of the exisiting restrictions on social contact will stay in place until 19th July.
There will be a few exceptions and the rules will change for:
weddings and civil partnership ceremonies and wedding receptions or civil partnership celebrations
- weddings and civil partnership ceremonies and wedding receptions or civil partnership celebrations
- commemorative events following a death such as a wake, stone setting or ash scattering
- large events pilots
- care home visits
- domestic residential visits for children
No new restrictions are being put in place
The full rules are on https://www.gov.uk/guidance/covid-19-coronavirus-restrictions-what-you-can-and-cannot-do
The purpose of the 4 week delay is to get more adults fully vaccinated with both doses and to try and ensure that all over 18s have had at least one dose.
The vaccines are shown to be very effective against all variants when people have had both doses so everyone is urged to take the vaccine when offered and, crucially, to make sure they return for the second dose.
Leeds infection rates are rising, in common with the rest of the country and today’s rate is up to 127.6 per 100,000.
Please keep following the rules and taking care to keep yourselves and others safe:
Headingley Farmers Market is back tomorrow 9am – 12.30pm at Rose Garden North Lane Headingley LS6 3JJ
Live Music between 10.30-11.30am
Online event with Leeds Civic Trust
Friday 11th June 11am – 12 noon
Join Leeds Civic Trust Director Martin Hamilton for an interview with Leeds City Council Leader James Lewis
Cllr James Lewis is the Labour Councillor Kippax and Mathley Ward and assumed the leadership of Leeds City Council following the elevation of Judith Blake to the House of Lords earlier this year
As the city emerges from the Covid pandemic, we will be asking James about his vision for the future of our city, discussing issues such as transport, the development of the city and how it will need to adapt to meet changes in working patterns, retail and leisure. This interview takes place after the election of the first Mayor for West Yorkshire. A key issue will be how he sees this new political relationship developing in the months and years to come. Click here to register for your free ticket
It’s fortunate that we, meaning people living in Yorkshire or similar counties, if there are such things, now have only one infection to worry about. We can reasonably expect not to be felled by smallpox polio, TB, diphtheria or any of teeming diseases that once shadowed our lives.
So, along with the amazing progress of the Covid vaccines, we should all be as cheerful as Pollyanna on a good day. It’s sad that we’re not and it’s largely, I think, because we’ve accepted the notion that physical disease and mental disease cannot be separated, so that even if we don’t die of Covid or find ourselves permanently disabled by it, we can still find something to moan about.
Of course, physical and mental health are very much connected but to force them both into the same playground, under the vague and modish heading of ‘wellbeing’, doesn’t help.
Mental diseases can be alarmingly acute and life-threatening, as much as strokes or heart attacks; they can also be destructive and debilitating on a less violent level but the usual mental effects of the pandemic – the ones that people complain about on just about every radio call-in show all day and all night – are in a different class.
Anxiety over the possibility of losing your job, natural distress over the early loss of a parent, insomnia or depression are not, in most cases, medical or psychiatric problems because they don’t have professional solutions. They are, like indigestion or low-grade mouth ulcers, part of life. They lie within the is the remit of not being dead.
Dr Samuel Johnson (1709-1784) suffered crushing episodes of depression and was beset by so many verbal and physical tics that, if you didn’t know he was the wisest man in the land, you would have gone to great lengths to avoid eye-contact.
He also, I think, had the best the best advice for people who want to improve their mental state without recourse to drugs, mindfulness classes or other unnecessary expenditure: ‘If you are idle, be not solitary; if you are solitary, be not idle.’ In other words keep busy and keep talking.
Johnson would sometimes turn up uninvited at Covent Garden market after a troubled night and take his mind off things by helping early-morning fruit and veg traders to set up their stalls (they didn’t mind; he was a big, energetic man and good at arranging vegetables).
On his journey to the Western Islands of Scotland he employed a translator (the islanders didn’t generally speak English) to answer questions about, for example, where they got their food or, which started an interesting controversy, who made their shoes.
He did not use ‘talking therapies’ in the modern sense; he was not interested in examining his own ego. But he did perhaps find talking, particularly to strangers with experiences other than his own, therapeutic – the best way to stop the demons which would otherwise be tormenting him.
Which, since we’ve all served our time in solitary, is a very good reason to get back to the pub.
This week is Carer’s week and the theme is Make Caring Visible and Valued.
You may not even think of yourself as a carer but does any of the following apply? Are you helping a friend or family member due to their illness, disability, mental health issue or a substance misuse problem?
Yes? – Then you are one of 74,000 unpaid carers in Leeds
Carers Leeds can offer help and support to you, if you have any questions or concerns, call their advice line Monday – Friday, 9am – 5pm on 0113 380 4300.
You can also find lots of information, as well as both online and face to face activities at Carers Leeds website https://www.carersleeds.org.uk/
ADD YOUR VOICE to support the 2021 Carers week campaign. As part of the campaign to raise awareness of caring, highlight the challenges unpaid carers face and recognise the contribution they make to families and communities throughout the UK, Carers Week are asking people (Carers or not) to add their voice to their wall – to help make caring Visible and Valued and help carers get the support they deserve
More details here https://www.carersweek.org/?cmp=voices