First coronavirus case in South Gloucestershire confirmed

March 12 2020
First coronavirus case in South Gloucestershire confirmed

SOUTH Gloucestershire’s first confirmed coronavirus case has been reported.

The case involves a resident who was infected with COVID-19 during “recent travel” and was not caught in the community.

No further details about the patient, who was treated in isolation at Southmead Hospital’s specialist infectious diseases unit yesterday before being discharged to ‘self-isolate’ at home, have been revealed.

Public Health England South West centre director Debra Lapthorne said: “Public Health England is contacting people who have had close contact with one confirmed case of COVID-19. The individual is a resident from the South Gloucestershire area, and was being cared for in isolated conditions at Southmead Hospital in its specialist infectious diseases unit. We have been advised that this case is related to recent travel and not community acquired.

“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. If you have not been contacted by Public Health England, you do not need to take any action at this time.”

North Bristol NHS Trust, which runs Southmead Hospital, is advising that there is no risk to other patients, visitors and staff and its services are running as normal.
South Gloucestershire Council director of public health Sara Blackmore, pictured above, said: “Public Health England has informed us of a confirmed case of COVID-19 (coronavirus) in South Gloucestershire.
“The individual was isolated in the infectious diseases unit at Southmead hospital yesterday and respecting patient confidentiality we are only confirming the case now as the individual has been discharged and is self-isolating at home.
“Our thoughts are with the affected individual and we wish them a speedy recovery.
“As you will appreciate, the situation is ever changing and given the national picture we are expecting to give regular updates.
“As Director of Public Health in South Gloucestershire, I wanted to reassure you that we are working closely with Public Health England and our health colleagues and are doing all we can to protect the health and safety of local people and given the national picture we were expecting this and are prepared.
“At an individual level we can make a big impact in helping to delay the spread of the virus by adhering to Public Health England guidance around personal hygiene:
- wash your hands thoroughly and regularly and
- use tissues when you cough or sneeze and dispose of them afterwards.
“Finally, if you have symptoms such as a high temperature, cough or shortness of breath then please use the online or telephone 111 service. DO NOT visit your GP or local hospital. 
“For further advice and guidance, refer to the Public Health England or NHS websites.”
Anyone who has recently been to an affected area and is feeling unwell should go to NHS 111 online, phone the NHS 111 helpline for further advice and should not go to their doctor or a hospital.

Further advice is available at www.nhs.uk/coronavirus