Why now is the time to Step Up For Hounslow!

Update from Hounslow’s Director of Public Health, Kelly O’Neill

Published: Friday, 4th June 2021

Image of Director of Public Health for Hounslow, Kelly O'Neill

We have three weeks left of surge testing and vaccination in the borough, which means more resources to get tested and vaccinated to help control the spread of the new Delta variant. We are each responsible for ourselves and those we care for - now is the time for us all to contribute and Step Up For Hounslow!

Our borough rate of infection is 53 per 100,000 people. This means that 145 people in Hounslow tested positive for Covid-19 in the last 7 days. The rate of infection in Hounslow has consistently been higher than the London average and the new Delta Variant is a concern. It appears to pass more easily between people. The number of cases of this variant accounts for over half the total number of Covid-19 cases and this is increasing.

I want as many people as possible to get a PCR test now, and continue to get tested regularly, even if you’ve been vaccinated. This will allow us to identify asymptomatic positive cases and, if they are the Delta variant, understand where cases are and take action. In areas with higher infection numbers my public health teams are talking to people, knocking on doors and giving out PCR tests. Please open the door, talk to them and do a test.

I am sorry to say there have been incidents where our engagement teams have had abuse shouted at them. This is not acceptable and will not be tolerated. They are trying to keep people safe, please show them respect.

If you are a parent of school age children, get a PCR test before school term restarts. Let’s all contribute to keeping our children in schools. Headteachers and school staff have been exceptional honorary public health teams, now parents, please help too by getting a PCR test even if you’re not symptomatic.

Being vaccinated is the single most important intervention to help us get back to normal and reduces the risk of serious illness from Covid-19. If you have a parent or grandparent who has not been vaccinated please ask them why. I cannot stress enough the protection afforded by full vaccination to reduce hospitalisation and death.

I repeat the offer I make every time I send a message – if you have questions please ask, contact publichealth@hounslow.gov.uk. I am happy to speak to anyone who has a question, or you can speak to your GP. Please, just ask.

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