Coronavirus latest

As everyone knows by now, we are once again in the middle of a national lockdown intended to reduce the spread of Coronavirus.

The new variant of the virus has now reached the borough, and it was announced last week that more than half of people testing positive locally were infected with this more infectious form of the illness.

The latest data also shows that whilst the number of infections have come down from their peak, they seem to be remaining stable:

Information shared by the council last week shows the number of infections has remained fairly stable over the last few weeks.

The good news is that vaccines are being rolled out as planned locally, with our local vaccination centre operating out of the NHS building at Bramley. Residents aged over 70 will be receiving a letter offering the opportunity to access a vaccine at Sheffield Arena. It is entirely up to residents if they wish to take this up or to access a vaccine more locally, but please please don’t ring your GP before they approach you, surgery teams are very busy already and everyone will be contacted in due course.

If you are contacted by the NHS Test and Trace and required to self-isolate, from this week there is additional financial support available from the council. Self-isolation payments are already available to people on certain benefits and those who experience financial hardship as a result of needing to isolate. But the government’s national rules mean that four out of five Rotherham residents who apply for “discretionary” grants are not eligible. So under Labour’s local scheme from this week £250 grants will be available to anyone who has a unique ID number from Test and Trace requiring them to isolate, and who can demonstrate any reduction in their income as a result of needing to isolate. That should make it easier for more people to get support to do the right thing.

To apply for a self-isolation grant, please click here – and more information about the local scheme will be available through that link in due course.

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