London Covid: The parts of Hounslow where coronavirus rates are remarkably low – My London
Chiswick has seen the lowest numbers of coronavirus cases in Hounslow borough during the pandemic, it has been revealed.
Hounslow Council’s public health experts said that of the three Chiswick wards, Chiswick Homefields was the only part where more than 100 cases were recorded in a seven day period.
Throughout the pandemic however the area made up 3.19 per cent of cases in Hounslow, while Chiswick Riverside accounted for 2.65 per cent of cases, and Turnham Green totalled 2.84 per cent of positive cases.
But the officers warned all three wards were seeing a rise in coronavirus transmissions, with more than a 60 per cent increase in each area since December 20.
The breakdown was explained at a virtual meeting of Chiswick Area Forum.
Meanwhile, areas such as Heston West and Hounslow Central have seen the highest numbers of cases in the borough.
Asked why there had been different coronavirus impact in borough areas, public health director Kelly O’Neill explained : “The reason why I think Heston and Central Hounslow [is more] is because of the demographics of the population. It’s a combination of age, deprivation and exposure, so people who work in service industries.
“You’ll have seen the Public Health England report that was published back in July…it was in particular relation to BAME communities who were the community groups most likely to die.
“What contributed to that was the fact those are the minority groups more likely to have the high exposure jobs, so they are more likely to be carers, taxi drivers, security guards so there is an issue about exposure and employment.
She added: “That I suppose is our main theory. The other indication we’ve seen is the biggest source of transmission, up until this variant, has been household transmission, so people who have multiple family members, inter-generational families living in the same households and in a confined space.
“Once you see one case one day, in the next subsequent days you’ll see two, three, four, or more cases..”
Meanwhile Ms O’Neill praised colleagues at Chiswick Health Centre who managed to vaccinate around 2,500 people in three days as they got an “extra batch” of doses.
Another vaccination centre is up and running at the Heart of Hounslow health centre, while a third site is due to open in Feltham.
Brentford was also announced to be the location of one of the 10 mass vaccination sites to be opened across North West London. It is expected to go live in early to mid February.
In the meeting on January 12, Ms O’Neill was also asked how much the proximity to Heathrow Airport had an impact on coronavirus cases locally.
While the public health boss said Hounslow’s bid to be a borough of culture meant there was a push to be a well connected area, she said: “That’s excellent if you’re a borough of culture but for a virus which is highly transmissible that’s not a particularly good position to be in.
“Essentially I think the proximity to the airport has probably contributed to this, certainly Hillingdon had a similar issue. I think…there was a lot of exposure initially. The airport is not running the same level currently as it was.
She added: “I think we missed a trick nationally for airport entry. We have health surveillance for airport entry but I don’t think we did it robustly enough nationally and we’re still in a position where screening of people arriving in the country is still not as effective as it needs to be if there is onward travel.”
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