An annual report on the health and wellbeing of residents in Stoke-on-Trent has been presented at today’s Cabinet meeting.
The report is a statutory duty of all directors of public health in England, and outlines the health of the local population. The 2020 edition examines the impact COVID-19 has had on the city so far.
During 2020, at least 5.2 per cent of the population of Stoke-on-Trent has tested positive for COVID-19. This equates to at 13,196 city residents. However, the true number of people infected during the year is likely to be much higher than this, since testing was initially only available in hospitals and not everyone will have come forward for testing opportunities.
COVID-19 hotspots and outbreaks have been reported in all wards of the city, with the highest rate of cases been in Lightwood North and Normacot. Normacot experience a community outbreak in August 2020 which was supported by a multi-agency and community response. Through this rapid response, cases were successfully reduced.
For 2020 as a whole, there were 520 people lost their lives and their deaths were linked to COVID-19. deaths linked to Covid-19. There were 180 fewer non Covid-19 deaths than usual. This means that throughout the year, there have been a total of 340 excess deaths.
Councillor Lorraine Beardmore, cabinet member for culture, leisure and public health said: “Over the past year, the phrase ‘unprecedented times’ has become very well known. By next year, we’ll have an even more detailed picture of how the pandemic has impacted our city and our communities. We know that as difficult as they have been, lockdown measures have been vital to helping to contain the virus where possible, and save lives, and now the roll out of the vaccine is having a huge part to play as we continue on our road to recovery.
“All service areas have had to adapt to the pandemic and it has been awe-inspiring to watch our organisation pull together to support our residents through this challenging period. We’ve set up a 24-hour mental health helpline, developed the #StokeonTrentTogether network to help people who have been self-isolating and shielding, advised schools and care homes – the list goes on. I am so proud of every single team in the council for their dedication and for being innovative and creative in continuing to deliver their services and in some cases, taking on new roles to support others.
“We are absolutely committed to improving the health and wellbeing of our residents, and we will continue to do all we can to help protect our communities from COVID-19. We also continue to remember those who sadly lost their lives to the virus.”