Snapshot of Covid infection shows the Banbury area (Cherwell) was county hotspot yesterday (January 2) with 249 cases recorded

The Cherwell district remained the Oxfordshire hotspot for Covid infection this week as 249 cases were recorded on Sunday, January 2 - against the closest figure for 191 in Vale of White Horse.

Monday, 3rd January 2022, 12:53 pm
Updated Monday, 3rd January 2022, 12:54 pm

The statistics come from the Oxfordshire public health page online which show Cherwell has had a total of 29,373 cases of Covid-19.

The corresponding figure for Oxford city is 183 with 168 in south Oxfordshire, 191 in Vale of White Horse and 152 in West Oxfordshire.

The current weekly rate of cases per 100,000 members of the population in Cherwell (to December 28) is 1402.1 against an overall Oxfordshire rate of 1281.9.

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Lateral flow tests have been hard to find over the Christmas and new year period

However the numbers may not be a true reflection as over the Christmas and New Year period members of the public found it increasingly difficult to access either Lateral Flow test kits or find accessible PCR tests.

Supply of test kits has been limited in spite of new rules requiring their use to end Covid quarantine early. It was revealed by The Times that Alliance Healthcare, the sole distributor of Covid lateral flow tests to pharmacies for distribution to the public, closed for four days over the Christmas period just after it received a delivery of 2.5m devices.

Members of the public have been depending on lateral flow tests to decide whether to socialise.

On December 29, before Health Secretary Sajid Javid said he may have to 'constrain' the UK testing system because of the lack of test kits, the UK Health Security Agency told the Banbury Guardian: “The UK’s testing programme is the biggest in Europe with almost 400 million tests carried out since the start of the pandemic.

“We are delivering record numbers of lateral flow tests to pharmacies across the country, with almost eight million test kits being made available to pharmacies between today and New Year’s Eve.

"We have made 100,000 more PCR booking slots available per day since mid-December and we are continuing to rapidly expand capacity – with over half a million tests carried out on 23 December alone and delivery capacity doubled to 900,000 PCR and LFD test kits a day.

“If you have not been able to get the test you need from gov.uk, please keep checking every few hours as more PCR and LFD tests become available every day.”

Today (Monday January 3) PCR tests were available more than 25 miles away at Carterton.