Friday 4 June 2021
Due to the impact of the coronavirus (COVID-19), we are providing regular email updates to let you know about the latest information we have on local and national measures to contain the virus, any changes to local services and support that’s available.
If you do not wish to receive these updates please click on “unsubscribe” at the bottom of the page.
Further information is available from www.rotherham.gov.uk/coronavirus
Open water safety warning in memory of Sam
Our hearts go out to the family and friends of local teenager Sam Haycock, who was tragically drowned at Ulley Reservoir last Friday.
With COVID-19 restrictions being reduced and more local people enjoying the summer weather, Rotherham residents are being urged to stay away from open water as high temperatures are forecast to continue.
However tempting it may be during periods of hot weather, members of the public are reminded not to go swimming in open water in reservoirs, rivers or canals, even if the water looks calm.
There could be strong hidden currents or rubbish and debris under the water line, as well as very cold temperatures which can hinder swimming abilities.
Sam, 16, sadly passed away last week after getting into difficulties and struggling with the shock of the cold water.
The effect on the body of entering water 15°C and below is often underestimated. It can seriously affect your breathing and movement. The sudden cooling causes an involuntary gasp for breath and increases breathing uncontrollably which leads to panic and inhaling water.
If you do find yourself entering the water unexpectedly:
- Take a minute. The initial effects of cold water pass in less than a minute so don’t try to swim straight away.
- Relax and float on your back to catch your breath. Try to get hold of something that will help you float.
- Keep calm then call for help or swim for safety if you’re able.
Stay safe, stay out of the water.
South Yorkshire Fire & Rescue has a series of helpful short videos about the different types of danger to be aware of when around water available on its website: Videos | RLSS UK (syfrwater.co.uk)
And further information on cold water shock is available from the RNLI: https://rnli.org/safety/know-the-risks/cold-water-shock
Please share this message with family and friends.
Covid rate climbs but slower than national increase
The COVID-19 infection rate in Rotherham remains below the national average although it has risen slightly in the last week as the easing of restrictions begins to have an impact.
The infection rate in Rotherham now stands at 26.4 per 100,000 – up from 22.6last week – with 60 cases in the borough in the last seven days. The England average is rising more quickly and currently stands at 33.7 per 100,000.
Nationally, the picture of new variant cases is changing and we expect that to continue. We are being vigilant in the monitoring of these variants in the local area.
Public Health England is now publishing the number of cases of the Delta variant (first identified in India) for each local authority. So far there have been less than five cases reported in Rotherham.
The best way to reduce the spread of all variants of COVID-19 and keep yourself and your family safe are the same. They are:
- Social distance: avoid close contact with others as much as possible
- Wash your hands regularly, especially while you’re out or when returning home
- Get tested regularly as a matter of course and ALWAYS if you are displaying symptoms
- Wear a face covering when required
- Self-isolate and don’t leave home if you test positive
- Get first or second doses of the vaccination when it’s your turn
Spotting the difference between hay fever and COVID-19
As the weather gets warmer, we know that a lot of residents will be suffering from the effects of hay fever.
NHS Rotherham Clinical Commissioning Group has pulled together this handy guide, which details what symptoms are hay fever and what symptoms are COVID-19.
If you are a hay fever sufferer, or know someone who is, have a read.
Click on the image to download a copy.
Remember, if you are displaying COVID-19 symptoms, you should self-isolate and arrange to get a test immediately.
Covid update from Rotherham Hospital
The latest update from Rotherham Hospital shows that six people are currently being treated for COVID-19 in the hospital, an increase from four last week.
Like last week, there are no COVID-19 patients in critical care.
Since the start of the pandemic, Rotherham Hospital has treated 2,586 people who have tested positive for COVID-19 and safely discharged a total of 1,900.
Visiting restrictions reminder
The hospital slightly eased visiting restrictions recently for a number of adult inpatient ward areas.
If your relative is currently an inpatient, you or another member of your family will receive a text message when the patient is moved to one of the wards where visitors are allowed. Details of how to book a visiting appointment will be included in the text message.
Visiting is allowed for one named visitor for up to 50 minutes and must be pre-booked.
The booking line number is in the text message – visiting cannot be booked by calling wards or the hospital Switchboard. The booking line often gets busy, so callers are asked to be patient.
Anyone who has tested positive for COVID-19, or who has any symptoms of COVID-19, must not visit.
Visit the Rotherham Hospital website for the latest on visiting arrangements.
Travelling outside the UK
The UK Government has placed restrictions in place for travelling outside the UK, with a COVID-19 traffic light system on countries based on how safe they are to visit.
These are changing regularly, so if you’re planning or have booked a foreign holiday or business trip, make sure you keep up to date with the latest information about travelling abroad on the Government website.
Here is a quick guide to what this means:
If a country is on the green list, this means you can go there on holiday but must:
You do not need to quarantine unless your day two test is positive, or NHS Test & Trace says you have travelled with someone who tested positive.
You will also need to pay for a private PCR test from one of the government’s list of approved UK providers which is about £60 per person for each test.
If a country is on the amber or red lists, this means you should not travel there under most circumstances.
Most countries are on the amber list which means that while going there is legal, you should only travel in ‘exceptional circumstances’. The government does not count holidays as exceptional circumstances
Red list countries are high risk and should not be visited “except in the most extreme of circumstances”. If you do go there, you will need to pay for a stay in a vaccination hotel on your return to the UK.
Pick up a test kit from local libraries or the Unity Centre
Around 1 in 3 people who have COVID-19 do not have symptoms, so to protect your loved ones it is best to get tested regularly.
Lateral Flow test kits are available free of charge from a range of places, including many Rotherham Council libraries, pharmacies, and the local test sites.
You can also collect rapid test kits for home use at the Unity Centre, Saint Leonard’s Road, Rotherham S65 1PD. All you need to do is visit the centre on Tuesday or Friday, 8:45am to 3:15pm, to pick up a pack of test kits for you and your family.
Find out more about asymptomatic testing on the Rotherham Council website
Watch our video to see how to take a Lateral Flow Test.
Calling all carers
We know Rotherham is a community that cares and we’ve seen this more than ever throughout the pandemic.
More than 30,000 unpaid carers are looking after parents, children, husbands, wives, friends and neighbours in our borough. But we know there will be many more people who don’t even see themselves as carers.
This Carers Week, Rotherham Council wants anyone who thinks they may be an unpaid carer to get in touch so we can make sure they have the information and support they need.
If that’s you, please email email@example.com so we can send you the latest information and signpost you to support.
By building on our existing database of unpaid carers we will be able to send regular news and updates to carers.
On Tuesday 8 June, from 10am-2pm, Council staff and partners from Crossroads Care Rotherham will be available at an information stand in front of Cares Corner in All Saints Square to answer questions and have a chat.
Do you know a Covid community champion?
We’re looking for people to nominate their local Covid Community Champions.
If you know an individual or business who has gone above and beyond during the COVID-19 Pandemic we want to hear from you
We’d love to share more stories about Covid Champions from across our borough – the people that have gone the extra mile to help their community or keep others safe.
If there’s someone that you think deserves recognition please send us their details, plus your name and contact details, along with the reason why you think they should be recognised. Tell us and we’ll tell Rotherham!
Simply email firstname.lastname@example.org with your nominations.
Click the image to sign up to receive the Rotherham Round-up
Sign-up to keep receiving email bulletins
We will stop producing these regular Covid updates when restrictions are lifted but you can still continue to receive regular free email bulletins from the Council by signing up to receive the Rotherham Round-up.
You must sign-up though, we can’t automatically register you.
We know from the feedback we’ve received that many of you value having regular updates about services, events and developments, so we’ve started to produce a fortnightly ebulletin. We’ll also include any covid-related news impacting our borough in the Rotherham Round-up bulletins.
As well as receiving information from across our area, there’s also a chance to sign-up for local news from your community, via our neighbourhood news bulletins using this form. Just tick the box indicating which part of the borough you’re from to receive those too.
The first issue of the Rotherham Round-up was sent out this week – you can view it here.