To all residents of Hertford and Stortford,
Our NHS faces what is arguably its greatest ever challenge.
We are at a pivotal point in our fight against coronavirus. Admissions of patients at Lister Hospital are up by 56% over the past seven days and up by 67% at The Princess Alexandra Hospital. Sadly, we know that more hospitalisations lead to more deaths. Deaths within 28 days of a positive test in East Hertfordshire are up by 67% over the last seven days.
This is not only what I see from government-level data. I also see this when engaging with local stakeholders.
Unfortunately, I am still receiving emails from some residents who underplay the threat that Covid presents. To those people who believe that the virus is not serious, that the new strain is not more transmissible than the original strain, or that it is okay to break the lockdown rules and take a risk on behalf of other people, I am afraid this is no longer a matter of opinion. This virus is far more serious than that.
My message to residents is clear: please do not break the rules during this period. The rules are limits and are not to be pushed.
None of us want to see our NHS overwhelmed. Our local health workers are heroes. To do our bit, we have to follow the rules. By doing this now, we will allow the vaccine to take the most vulnerable individuals out of the path of the virus, protecting our NHS is the process.
Please do stay safe. We will get through this together.
Julie Marson MP