Residents are being warned they should minimise the number of people they mix with outside their household to help stop the growth of Covid-19.
In the last week the number of confirmed cases in St Helens Borough has risen sharply, following a regional trend that has seen neighbouring areas affected by a similar rise.
As a result residents living in the most affected areas will see increased communication and encouraged to avoid mixing with different groups of people in a short space of time and following all guidance on social distancing, hand washing, keeping distance and wearing face masks.
Those people on who are on the shielding list in the affected area will also be contacted directly to offer support and advice.
Sue Forster, Director of Public Health at St Helens Borough Council, said: “We are seeing a worrying quick increase in positive tests across the borough and the worst affected at present is the Newton-le-Willows area. This rise has happened even though we have not seen a rise in testing numbers in the borough so we are seeing more community transmission at this time.
“We are taking this action cut off the community transmission by making people in the Newton-le-Willows area aware there has been a number of confirmed cases in close proximity to them.
“This virus thrives on contact so we all have a role to play in reducing the opportunity for it to spread. Letters will be sent to those households in the affected area which are deemed more vulnerable to risk of Covid-19 while schools and community groups will be also be targeted in the communications in Newton-le-Willows.
“But the message is the same to everybody in the borough. Help to reduce the risk of transmission by limiting the number of people you meet with from outside your household, particularly around social activities at home or out and about, sure you keep at least 2m distance if possible, wash hands regularly and wear a face mask in enclosed spaces.”
The main symptoms to look out for are a fever, a new, continuous cough or loss of taste or smell. No matter how mild they may be you must isolate for 10 days and get a test. Even if your results come back negative you should continue to isolate as the test is only a picture of your health at that time.
For more advice, particularly if you need support with food and medicine or if you need to isolate, visit: www.sthelens.gov.uk/coronavirus or call St Helens Contact Cares on 01744 676767.
Testing at Haydock Park Racecourse is available to book online at www.gov.uk/guidance/coronavirus-covid-19-getting-tested or on 119 and although there is capacity issues we would encourage people if they are unsuccessful first time to leave it a few hours and try to rebook later in the day.