First detected in India in October, the India coronavirus variant is currently under investigation to decide whether it is one of concern and more dangerous than the strains in the UK currently – the Kent, Brazil and South Africa variants.
Health bosses added that there have been “some outbreaks” in Lincolnshire which they are following up on through close contacts, but these are not concerning. From LDRS’ infection rate data, these outbreaks are likely to be in the West and East Lindsey districts.
Overall the infection rates in Lincolnshire are falling (down to 32.8), but are above the England average of 24.8 infections per 100,000 people.
Professor Derek Ward, Lincolnshire County Council’s Director of Public Health, said: “We’re not yet sure whether [the India variant is] one to worry overly about. The Kent variant is still the dominant strain in the UK and there’s no indication that’s changing.
“I’ve not been notified that we’ve had any of that particular variant in Lincolnshire. We have had a few isolated other variants of concern or interest in Lincolnshire, but they’re all associated with travel, so people coming back from other countries and bringing it with them.”
This has been picked up through PCR testing and has been actively managed by Public Health England.
Professor Ward added: “We’ve got some outbreaks and we are following up close contacts. As ever, there’s always outbreaks, I suspect we’ll probably see some outbreaks in schools in the next week or two as well.
“There certainly have been one or two this week which we ware following up on once I’ve got more details […] but nothing that’s jumping out at me and causing me a lot of concern.”
On Wednesday, West and East Lindsey districts saw increases in their infection rates, while the other districts saw decreases, suggesting the small outbreaks have occurred in these two districts.