DEATHS from Covid-19 in Winchester district are rising although the recent spike in cases is continuing to ease.

In the last week 15 deaths have been reported, up from one in the previous seven days.

Across Hampshire there is a similar picture with 146 deaths reported by the NHS, compared to 71 in the seven days before.

These fatalities would have been people contracting the virus several weeks ago when the number of cases was rising fast.

Forty-nine people have been reported to have died across Hampshire County Council area, so excluding Southampton and Portsmouth, in the last 24 hours.

Winchester is now the only district in Hampshire, and one of only two in the south-east, along with West Berkshire, not coloured either purple or black on the official Government map. Its area is now a blue hole in a ring of purple. It means its infection rate is now below 400 per 100,000 people for the first time since the seven days to Christmas Eve.

Hampshire Chronicle: Winchester district marked in blueWinchester district marked in blue

In the seven days to Friday January 8, the most recent for which these figures are available, there were in Winchester district 490 cases, down 116, or 19 per cent, for a rolling number per 100,000 of 392.4 - although that number is slightly up on the previous day.

The number of cases reported in the last seven days is lower than in the previous week. Today there were 61 cases, taking to 423 the number in the last seven days. The previous seven days had 589 cases.

The worst-affected place remains Denmead and Southwick where there has been 80 new cases, down 23 week on week, a drop of 22 per cent, with a rolling number of 780.0, slightly up. It is marked purple on the official map, instead of the worst rating of black.

Things are also cooling in the hotspot of Oliver’s Battery and Hursley, according to Government figures released this evening. In the seven days to January 8, 24 cases were reported, down 26 on the previous seven days, a decrease of 52.0 per cent. The rolling number per 100,000 people has edged up to 293.5, but still below the UK average.

Another area that had seen sharp rises was South Wonston, Sutton Scotney and Micheldever. In the seven days to January 8, there have been 30 cases, up one, for a rolling rate of 510.4, now below the UK average and down from 646.5 on January 3.

The Winchester ‘district’ covers more than just the ‘city’ and covers Hampshire from Micheldever to Denmead, and Crawley to Ropley.

Another 49 people are reported to have died of Covid-19 in the Hampshire County Council area on Tuesday. It brings to 1,349 the death toll since the start of the pandemic, or a rate of 97.6 per 100,000, now above the Winchester number. In the Winchester City Council district fatalities have reached 121, or 96.9 per 100,000. In Southampton the figure is 181, up four,or 71.7 per 100,000. In Portsmouth the figure is 186, for 86.5 per 100,000.

The number of cases in the Winchester district since the start of the pandemic is now 3,623, an infection rate of 2,901 per 100,000, below the UK average of 4,956.

In the area covered by Hampshire County Council there were 904 positive test results in the last 24 hours, bringing the total to 43,608. The seven-day numbers to January 8 are 7,729, up 362 or 4.9 per cent per cent, for a rolling 559.0, rising gently.

A further 26 Covid-19 deaths have been reported by the NHS in Hampshire today. The Hampshire Hospitals Trust death toll is now 286, up five. At Southampton Hospital the figure is 289, up six. Portsmouth Hospitals Trust recorded a further 15 to take its total to 530. Southern Health Trust is now 30 deaths, no change, with the figure for the Solent NHS Trust staying at four.

Across the county’s NHS, the five trusts mentioned above, some 1,139 people have died since March, within 28 days of a positive test.

The Office for National Statistics reports 1,349 have died in the Hampshire County Council area, with an increase of 49 today.

The most recent figures from the NHS, released on Monday, show there are currently 84 Covid patients at the RHCH compared to 57 last week and 126 at Basingstoke hospital compared to 105 previously. There are five patients at Andover War Memorial Hospital.

Experts estimate the new strain of Covid-19 is 50 per cent more transmissable, explaining the sharp increase in cases in recent weeks.

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