TWO people from the BCP Council area have tested positive for the coronavirus, Public Health England (PHE) has confirmed.
It did not give further details of the cases, which it revealed in its latest national update, but it has been reported one was a member of a gym in Poole.
PHE’s latest figures also revealed eight people have now tested positive in Hampshire. Today (Monday) Peter Symonds College in Winchester confirmed one of its students is one of those affected.
The latest national figures said 244 people in the UK have tested positive for coronavirus out of more than 23,500 people who have been tested – which equates to around 1.1%.
This morning it was confirmed a man in his 60s from Manchester was the third person from the UK to die having contracted the virus.
Over the weekend University Hospital Southampton NHS Foundation Trust said a member of its staff tested positive for the virus and is self-isolating at home.
“The small number of patients and staff who came into close contact with this individual have been informed and will be appropriately isolated,” the trust said in a statement on Sunday.
It added the surgical high dependency unit would be temporarily closed and any patient affected by that would be contacted directly.
“The trust is following PHE and NHS guidance in respect of the virus and all other services are operating normally,” the statement went on.
“Patients and staff should continue to attend appointments normally and come into work unless advised not to.”
Some local shops have been reported to have sold out of goods such as hand sanitiser gel and toilet rolls.
But Hampshire County Council’s director of public health, Simon Bryant, has offered reassurance that the risk to the general public “remains low”.
He said: “We are working with health colleagues to do everything we can to stop the virus spreading and ensure the people of Hampshire are protected as much as possible.”
Current evidence indicates that most cases of coronavirus appear to be mild, with patients experiencing flu-like symptoms. Older residents or those with weakened immune systems or long-term conditions may experience more severe symptoms.
Health and local authorities are strongly encouraging people to follow national government guidance to prevent further spread of the illness and limit the numbers affected.
It includes basic hygiene precautions as 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 do not touch your face unless you have just washed your hands.
Mr Bryant said: “These are the same simple steps we all should be taking to avoid other illnesses such as flu which is also prevalent during the winter and it is important that residents help protect themselves and others.
“If you have recently travelled to an affected area, or been in contact with someone who has, and you think you have symptoms associated with the coronavirus, you should not go to A&E or your doctor but self-isolate yourself at home and ring NHS 111 which has an online coronavirus service that can tell if you need medical help and advise you what to do.”
The symptoms of coronavirus (COVID-19) are a high temperature, cough and shortness of breath.
Self-isolation means people should stay at home, not go to work, school or public places or use public transport or taxis.
They should also ask friends, family members or delivery services to do errands and try to avoid visitors to your home – although it is okay for friends, family or delivery drivers to drop off food. That may need to be done for up to 14 days to help reduce the possible spread of infection.
For more information on the symptoms and steps to take, go to www.nhs.uk/coronavirus.
For the latest advice for travellers returning from affected areas, plus guidance to schools and care homes, visit www.gov.uk/coronavirus.