Since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, swab results for Covid-19 have been processed by different laboratories. We have always had access to the number of positive tests done for Herefordshire in NHS labs, known as pillar 1, but we have not previously had access to similar results for pillar 2 tests, those done in commercial labs.
These data have been released today (2nd July), so the numbers in Herefordshire will show a sudden increase in cases. Numbers have now gone from 464 to 760 cases since the start of March, although many people in the first months were not able to access testing. While an increase of 296 extra cases may initially sound alarming, it is important to note that these are old cases, that have now been included within the county total.
This does not mean we have a local outbreak, as these cases have occurred over the last 3 months. It is very helpful to have better data finally, but people should be reassured that locally new cases are still very low, with only 3 new cases in Herefordshire in the last week.
The actual data are here, for those interested:
Dr Simon Lennane