Howard & David

Good afternoon everyone

Numbers

  • 16 results awaiting
  • 1 new case – unknown source
  • 13 active cases
  • 2 cases in hospital
  • 1 in ICU

Howard

Despite the emergence of the cluster of cases, the emergence of new cases this week are relatively low.

Contact tracing is working to establish a chain of transmission

But this new unknown case is a cause for concern

We need to remain vigilant

If you have any symptoms stay home with your household and call 111, even if you have had your vaccine

It is important to remember why we are changing our approach to the virus

The vax programme has been a game-changer: moving from elimination to living with the virus

Over the weekend we hit the 70k vax milestone

The vaccine will significantly reduce fatalities and the number of people who suffer severe adverse reactions to the virus. 

The UK is looking good

With these factors, it means we are in a positive position to change our approach

Exit Strategy

Approved by Tynwald

A journey from living with the virus instead of eliminating it

Saturday, May 1st – Level 4 to Level 3 

We will release plans in the next few days

This means family, partners and property owners can travel to the island

Shared iso and households will be introduced

Changing from 14 days to seven day iso – subject to undergoing testing

We will publish full details and cover this in Thursday’s briefing

COMEN has explored options for how iso requirements can move forward

If we see a significant number of cases we will lockdown households, where someone has tested positive, through our current contact tracing protocols

Avoiding lockdown from the backdoor: must get the balance right and ensure our response 

This challenge became apparent in the last outbreak when services came under pressure because of widespread isolation

COMEN have agreed the following to come into effect from tomorrow

Anyone who tests positive for the virus will need to isolate for 10 days instead of 14 days

The end of iso is subject to an exit test

Other members of the household will be involved in testing

If you test positive for the virus it’s the same process as now the only thing changing is the number of days in isolation – 10 days instead of 14

Also from tomorrow

Anyone who is classed as high risk but from a different household only needs to isolate for 10 days, opposed to 14 – subject to a negative exit test

They can also go and exercise once a day after they’ve received their first negative test result

Vigilance from everyone in a high-risk household is extremely important

These rules apply to everyone in isolation currently

After more than a year these changes our significant

Our approach to the virus must flex accordingly

Every change we make carries risk

We’re learning to live in a world with Covid

David

111- Arrange your holiday around appointments, not the other way around. This is very important

People who refuse or reject second appointment will be put at the back of the queue

People have been rude and threatening to 111 staff – stop

People can’t demand their booking is changed for non-medical travel because there’s a lot of logistics 

Work at airport hub has been affected because of people rejecting Oxford vaccine: we can’t give everyone a choice

Those under 30 will be offered the Pfizer, where supplies allow

We are concentrating on second doses, as they have to be delivered in a specific time frame

Having your jab helps you and others stay safe

Registration is open for all groups: you don’t need to wait for your letter. It is crucial

Check your emails for your booking: you need to click to confirm. If not, you risk your place. *check your spam folder*

Employers should let, when practical, their employees go to the vaccine hub. 

Bit of a myth: Covid vaccine affects fertility. This is not true and comes from rumours. Always go to reliable sources.

Questions

Al Bell: Short lead in to publish terms that people can travel. Can you expect people to come over without knowing the plans?

HQ: They will be able to stay with family members for seven days. Paperwork will become available in the next few days. A form will be online now.

Al Bell: Does quarantine completely end?

HQ: It will be like last summer- not completely, we will be giving more details for this in the next 48 hours.

Al Bell: How many cases in a day would we have to go to lockdown?

HQ: A number of issues there Alex. Hospital capacity, Covid ward capacity. What type of case? Are the cases isolated or have they been to a big party? It’s a much bigger picture.

David: It’s not about numbers now, it’s about context and the background of cases.

Sam Turton: With shared isolation and testing, how can you ensure we don’t create a two-tier system between those who can afford to travel and those who can’t?

HQ: Cost coming down hopefully, just a day one and exit test.

Sam: Data not dates- UK case figures are down. Why aren’t we at border level 2? 

HQ: Small steps so we don’t go backwards. We are working to 14-day averages, the UK is working to seven days.

David: We don’t want to bounce between border levels. 

Helen: When will the Isle of Man stop asking people returning to the island to isolate if they have Covid?

HQ: You can’t travel if you have Covid. If you test for Covid on Day 1, you’ll go down from 14 days isolation to 10. In June, we may change it to a 1-day test and no isolation, if you’re negative. There’s a lot of unknowns. I’m looking forward to the day when we don’t need to worry. Light at the end of the tunnel but we need to do it right as we don’t want to go back.

Helen: Is gov going to publish a reader-friendly document for the Exit Strategy?

HQ: Big fan of keeping things simple – Comms are working on it.

Rob: Iso changes – 10 days if someone tests positive as of tomorrow. But what about if you test negative having rang 111 to report symptoms and will people have to pay for tests?

HQ: If you’re travelling, people will have to pay for tests and we’ll be announcing a significant reduction in price going forward on Thursday, plus it’s just the two tests now.

David: Process stays the same for those who have symptoms but get a negative result.

Rob: For those who isolate, but don’t take the tests, will it be longer than 10 days iso for them?

David: Yes they will need to isolate longer if you don’t take up the option to test then it will be a longer iso period.

Tim: Testing and charging – Hospitality have had a terrible year, hoping to get some visitors this year. Jersey gov pays for all tests at no cost to the traveller.

HQ: We will have to look at that when we have visitors coming over to the Isle of Man. 

Tim: If people want to wear a mask and social distance, how will they achieve this?

HQ: It’s a personal choice. We are still advising masking wearing in crowds and social distancing. 

David: Respect others’ choices. 

HQ: Some people physically can’t take the vaccine, they may be wearing a mask because of a health issue and to protect them.

Simon: How many refusals have there been to date for vaccines? 

David: Several hundred people have cancelled but it’s hard to tell as some people have cancelled and then rebooked at a later date.

Simon: Feeling Covid fatigue. Has there been a rise in mental health referrals? Do you think there will be a legacy?

David: The number has been steady, but we’re expecting more referrals and we will need to deal with that. 

Closing

Take care 

Remain vigilant

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