National Respiratory and Covid Surveillance from Public Health Scotland for the week ending 30th March 2023.
Changes in PCR testing guidance has reduced the numbers of tests available for sequencing compared to earlier in the pandemic, though in the previous six months numbers have been relatively stable.
The Office of National Statistics (ONS) survey results are Scotland’s current best understanding of community population prevalence, however, that publication is now paused.
Another way of charting the progress of Covid in the community is through waste water monitoring. The last information received for Orkney (Kirkwall sewage system) was the 10th of March 2023. Nationwide, Covid-19 levels in the last week have shown a rise compared to the previous week.
The purpose of COVID-19 testing has now shifted from population-wide testing to reduce transmission, to targeted, symptomatic testing in clinical care settings which has led to a reduction in the quantity and quality of available testing data. In the week ending 26 March 2023, there were 2,683 reported positive COVID-19 cases (compared to 2,787 in week ending 19 March 2023).
In the latest week ending 26 March 2023, there were 437 new COVID-19 admissions to hospital. Hospital admissions for the most recent week are provisional and should be treated with caution. At the time of publication there were no data available for two NHS Health Boards, and the previous week’s figures have been rolled forward.
There were 45 COVID-19 admissions (4.5%) per 1,000 emergency admissions. In the same week, the 80+ age group had the highest rate of COVID-19 admissions (8.5%) and the 30-39 age group had the lowest rate (1.4%).
The 80+ age group had the longest median length of stay in hospital at 4.8 days, while the Under 18 age group had the shortest at 0.7 days.
The number of COVID-19 patients in hospital is an indicative measure of the pressure on hospitals, as these patients still require isolation from other patients for infection control purposes.
In the most recent week ending 26 March 2023, on average there were 1,323 patients in hospital with COVID-19 which is a 17.0% increase from the previous week ending 19 March 2023, when on average there were 1,131 patients.
There were 13 new admissions to ICU, no change from the previous week (19 March 2023). Over the past week there were on average 209 patients in ICU, of which 8.1% (17 patients) had a positive SARS-CoV-2 result.
Vaccination has been crucial in reducing the severity of illness brought on by Covid-19. During the current vaccination programme a total of 1,987,617 COVID-19 vaccines and 1,932,813 influenza vaccines have been delivered to adults currently resident in Scotland. In the latest week ending 26 March 2023, 564 COVID-19 vaccines and 353 influenza vaccines were administered.
NHS Orkney Spring Vaccination Programme
The below groups are now eligible to receive a Covid spring booster vaccination:
• Adults aged 75+
• Care home residents
Appointment letters will begin to be sent out from week commencing 3rd April with appointments scheduled from the 11th April.
Most people do not need to do anything, simply wait for your appointment letter to come through the post and then attend at your given appointment time. Please note, the letters will be in blue envelopes, addressed from NHS Scotland rather than NHS Orkney but, rest assured, all the appointments are scheduled in Orkney.
It is important to note the change of location for this vaccination programme. The spring booster vaccination appointments will all be held at the Boys Brigade Hall, Thoms Street, Kirkwall, KW15 1UN.
As a reminder, the above does not apply to Stromness and ferry linked isles patients. Both of these cohorts will be notified via their GP with details for arranging their vaccination appointments.
More details on the spring booster programme can be found here, https://www.nhsinform.scot/spring-coronavirus-covid-19….
To find the above information regarding our roll out, please head to our webpage, https://www.ohb.scot.nhs.uk/…/spring-covid-booster…
Scottish Government Information: There are no covid rules or restrictions in Scotland.
There are things you can do to stay well and protect others, like:
- staying at home if you have symptoms
- wearing a face covering
- washing your hands regularly
- meeting in well-ventilated spaces
- supporting Distance Aware, for anyone who prefers others to take extra care around them