Three cases of coronavirus confirmed in Hertfordshire
PUBLISHED: 16:13 01 March 2020 | UPDATED: 16:35 01 March 2020
Three cases of coronavirus in Hertfordshire have now been confirmed by health officials.
Following the confirmation on Saturday of the county's first case of coronavirus, two more patients have tested positive for COVID-19.
Public Health England East and Hertfordshire County Council confirmed the latest cases in a joint statement released today (Sunday, March 1).
Dr David Edwards, consultant in health protection for Public Health England East, said: "Public Health England is contacting people who had close contact with three confirmed cases of COVID-19 that are residents of Hertfordshire.
"We're working closely with NHS colleagues in that area as well as Hertfordshire County Council to manage the situation and help reduce the risk of further cases.
"Close contacts will be given health advice about symptoms and emergency contact details to use if they become unwell in the 14 days after contact with the confirmed case.
"This tried and tested method will ensure we are able to minimise any risk to them and the wider public."
No locations of where in the county the patients are from have officially been revealed yet by the authorities.
Hertfordshire County Council and PHE are unable to comment on individual cases due to patient confidentiality.
The county council's director of public health, Jim McManus, is reassuring residents after the Department of Health and Social Care announced the two new coronavirus cases in Hertfordshire.
He said: "These new cases of coronavirus are nothing unexpected.
"We fully anticipate an increase in numbers which is why our services have planned for, and are ready, for this situation.
"Current evidence indicates that most cases appear to be mild, with patients experiencing flu-like symptoms."
He added: "Older residents or those with weakened immune systems or long-term conditions may experience more severe symptoms, which is why it is important to help protect ourselves and each other.
"Following Government guidance to take basic hygiene precautions remains the best way of significantly reducing the chances of spreading any virus: sneeze or cough into a tissue, bin it, wash your hands frequently and don't touch your face unless you've just washed your hands.
"We should do this all day every day as we should for flu.
"Good regular cleaning with normal detergent of surfaces people touch regularly or may cough onto, like door handles and lift buttons, is also sensible."
People should log onto https://gov.uk/coronavirus for the latest advice and information.
If you value what this story gives you, please consider supporting the Welwyn Hatfield Times. Click the link in the orange box below for details.