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Orkney COVID-19 transmission among lowest in Scotland

Orkney has recorded one of the lowest levels of COVID-19 transmission in the past week compared to anywhere in Scotland.

This is according to NHS Orkney, which confirmed today that the seven-day transmission rate of COVID-19 in Orkney and Shetland is lower than in the rest of the country.

However, the health authority has warned that the virus is still circulating in both communities.

In Orkney, the seven-day transmission rate is 53.6 per 100,000 people versus Scotland’s which is 183.7.

In Shetland rate is 30.6/100,000.

While the Scottish Environment Protection Agency (SEPA) is reporting a weak presence of COVID in Shetland’s wastewater, the virus is clearly still present in Orkney. SEPA pinpoints fragments of the virus’s RNA in wastewater samples forewarning Public Health authorities of its presence.

NHS Orkney consultant in public health Sara Lewis said new cases of the virus continued to be tested in the laboratory at the Balfour. 

“We have a high vaccination rate in Orkney which means that most people will not become as ill as they might have at the beginning of the pandemic, however, we do have some who are vulnerable or who have chosen not to be vaccinated and we urge them to take special care.” 

Avoiding crowds and washing hands regularly with soap and water remains the best way to prevent infection. Mrs Lewis urged people who still need to be vaccinated to make contact.