How Hartlepool's coronavirus case count is doing as town enters tenth week of lockdown
Hartlepool has seen a sharp fall in the rate of new coronavirus cases during the latest national lockdown.
The third lockdown was announced by Prime Minister Boris Johnson on Monday, January 4, and officially came into effect two days later.
Yesterday, Wednesday, March 10, marked nine weeks since the new regulations were formally adopted, so how is the town faring as we enter the tenth week of restrictions?
As in the rest of the country, the number of coronavirus cases in Hartlepool had risen sharply in the month or so before the third lockdown officially started.
There were just 31 new cases confirmed in the town on December 1, a number which had gone up five-fold by December 29, when the case count hit 154.
On the day the new lockdown formally began, January 6, that had come down but the numbers remained worryingly high. There were still 77 new cases in the town and the case count would remain stubbornly high for the rest of the month. It would peak at 93 on January 7 and not dip continuously below 30 a day until the last week of February.
In comparison, yesterday saw just 16 new cases confirmed in the town, a fall of 61 – or nearly 80 per cent – since the official start of lockdown.
The weekly case rate in the town has also fallen sharply since the new restrictions were first applied.
The latest figures, for the seven days up to March 5 (the last five days are excluded in case of inaccuracies) show there were 111 new cases in total in Hartlepool, an average of 118.5 new infections per 100,000 people.
By contrast, in the seven days to January 1 (the most recent figures available at the start of the third lockdown), there were 747 new cases, the equivalent of 797.5 per 100,000 head of population.
The coronavirus death rate in Hartlepool’s hospital trust has also fallen sharply during lockdown.
There were 14 virus-related fatalities confirmed in the town in the week up until the third lockdown started. In the last week, there have been just two virus deaths in the trust.
There were 163 patients hospitalised with the virus on January 6, down to 55 in the latest figures.