Lincolnshire coronavirus: Young cases spike

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COVID rates are now spiking in the young population in Lincolnshire, as health bosses plea with people to take advantage of a big vaccine push this month.

Lincolnshire’s director of public health Professor Derek Ward said infection rates among the 20-24-year-olds had risen from around 25-26 per 100,000 population at the beginning of June to a current figure of 260.

It comes as cases continue to double week-on-week with Thursday’s government data confirming 177 cases across Greater Lincolnshire compared to 78 (127% rise) the previous Thursday.

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Professor Ward said the increase was expected after lockdown had eased, but that there was no spike in hospitalisations or deaths.

He confirmed several schools had seen cases and outbreaks recently.

He said: “What we’re seeing with the people catching the disease at the moment, it’s really clear they are younger adults or secondary age school children groups — where we haven’t yet got the vaccine completely rolled out.”

“What I really advise, anybody 18 or over who hasn’t had their vaccine, you are now eligible so please, please, please get along and get a dose.”

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The NHS in Lincolnshire is taking part in a national push this weekend, including a number of walk-in opportunities which will offer people the chance to get their coronavirus vaccinations this weekend, without the need to book an appointment.

They include:

Saturday, June 26 – The Arboretum, Lincoln (Monks Road entrance) – a mobile unit will offer Pfizer walk-in vaccinations, both first and second doses, on a ‘first come, first served’ basis between 12pm-3pm for anyone aged 18 or over who is eligible

Sunday, June 27 – Newland Pharmacy, Lincoln will be offering Pfizer walk-in vaccinations on the same basis between 10am-2pm to anyone 18 or over who is eligible. This includes both first and second doses

Friday, June 25-Sunday, June 27 – The Storehouse in Skegness will be providing walk-in Pfizer vaccinations between 8.30am-5pm for both first and second doses on a ‘first come, first served’ basis

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The county’s mass vaccination centres – Lincolnshire Showground and Princess Royal Sports Arena (PRSA) in Boston – will offer vaccinations on a walk-in basis between 8am-7pm on Friday, June 25 and Monday, June 28.

Professor Ward said the government was keeping a close eye on vaccination and immunisations for those under 18s in other countries before deciding whether to roll it out to those age groups.

Meanwhile, the Delta variant has now become the dominant strain in Lincolnshire, with 97% of those sequenced following a positive test up to June 22 being the variant.

“That’s been the case for the past few days, so clearly Delta is now our dominant strain,” he said.

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Again, Professor Ward said bosses were keeping a close eye on a worrying increase in another variant known as the Delta-plus, but said at the moment it was not competing with the original variant in the county.

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