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'Don't Ignore Covid Symptoms'

It's feared some islanders are ignoring Covid-19 symptoms and are carrying on as normal - potentially spreading the virus.

Guernsey Health officials have been responding to a slight increase in cases in recent days - up to 111 active infections, with two patients in hospital.

They are reminding us to continue to following the guidance and keep up good hygiene habits as we head into the winter.

They say there is evidence of people being symptomatic and not reporting these symptoms, but 'continuing as normal in the community for several days, transmitting the virus as they do so'.

Medical Director Dr Peter Rabey says, although vaccination has dramatically reduced the number of people who will become seriously ill if they catch Covid and reduced transmission, it is still possible to spread the virus.

"... alongside the vaccines, we’ve continued to advise people that they should practice good hand hygiene, respect each others’ personal space, avoid poorly ventilated or crowded spaces where possible. Most of all we’ve urged people to stay at home if they have any symptoms and report them so they can be tested.

Those continue to be extremely important in reducing the spread of the virus. If we don’t follow any of those measures, cases will rise, especially as it gets colder and we’re all spending more time indoors."

Dr Rabey is urging people to think of the most vulnerable in the community - saying the vaccine gives them much better protection but does not make them immune.

"We could still see some people become very ill. Even if that’s only a small percentage, if the number of active cases increases then so will the numbers needing hospital care.”

His message has been underlined by Dr Nicola Brink, Director of Public Health.

“Case number may fluctuate, but it’s really important we don’t become complacent just a we head into the winter months, if for no other reason than to protect the most vulnerable Islanders. We cannot forget that in some cases this can still be a potentially deadly virus. Many of us will have elderly or vulnerable friends and relatives, we may work alongside them, we may visit them in care settings, and we should take seriously our responsibility in keeping them safe.”

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