The number of people testing positive for coronavirus in Bristol is the highest it’s been for a month.
On the day a further step towards easing the lockdown was made, with pubs and restaurants allowed to serve customers indoors, a total of 20 people’s positive Covid tests were recorded across Bristol.
That’s the highest number of new cases recorded in Bristol in a single day since 22 people tested positive on April 15, more than a month ago, and signals a slight increase in numbers of infections in the city in recent days.
This new high number is not linked to Monday’s easing of lockdown restrictions – the people whose positive tests were recorded today (May 17) would almost certainly have caught the virus last week, and taken their tests late last week or over the weekend.
On the day indoor venues like cinemas, bingos, pubs and bars reopened, there were far fewer cases of Covid in the city than the last time they were open before Christmas.
The number of new cases is always higher on a Monday – as test results are recorded from the weekend, and over the last five Mondays, the numbers of new cases have been recorded as 16, 16, 12, 12 and now 20.
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The more accurate figure of new cases is the rolling seven-day average of new cases recorded over an entire week.
That dropped below 100 in Bristol on April 24, and continued to fall, but has begun to creep up again in the past few days and, as of the most recent recorded average day, May 12, was at 69 cases a week.
The ‘case rate’ – the number of new people catching Covid-19 in Bristol in the past seven days – is still low, at 14.9 per 100,000 people.
In areas of the country like Bolton and Blackburn, where they are grappling with an outbreak of the new Indian variant of Covid-19, the case rates are 10 or 20 times higher.
In the areas around Bristol, the numbers of new cases are even lower. In South Gloucestershire, the positive test results of five people were registered on Monday.
In North Somerset and also in Bath & North East Somerset, that figure was just three in both local authority areas.
The weekly case rate in Bristol, of 14.9 cases per 100,000 people in Bristol is different for different age groups in the city.
According to the Department of Health statistics, the spread of new cases of Covid-19 in Bristol is fairly evenly distributed among age ranges.
The most recent data for Covid-19 case rates among age groups is for the week ending May 12, last Wednesday.
It shows that while the average for Bristol is 14.9, it’s actually double that for people in their late 30s.
The case rate for people aged between 35 and 39 is 29.7 cases per 100,000 – the highest in any age group in Bristol.
This is the age group that is now beginning to receive invitations for vaccines, and there is a marked decline in the numbers of people older than 40, who have mostly had their first vaccine by now, testing positive for the virus.
There are now just six people in hospital in Bristol with coronavirus. Two of these were admitted on May 7 and 8 to Southmead Hospital, while four more are being cared for at the University Hospitals Bristol and Weston Trust, which run the BRI and Weston General Hospital.
The most recent figures for both trusts are for last Tuesday, May 11, and the UHBW Trust report that two of their four Covid patients are on ventilators.
Back during the height of the second wave, in the middle of January, both hospital trusts were reporting more than 30 people a day were being admitted with Covid, and for a week or so, there were more than 450 people with Covid-19 in the city’s two hospitals
No new deaths from coronavirus were recorded in the Bristol area in the past 24 hours. The last death in Bristol was recorded on May 2. In the week ending April 30, doctors registered Covid as the cause of death on two people’s death certificates.