The Essex director of public health has urged the public to get vaccinated, as rules are set to change.

From tomorrow (Monday August 16), people who are fully vaccinated against Covid-19 will not need to self-isolate if they are identified as a close contact of a positive Covid-19 case.

The rule change applies to adults who have had both jabs at least 14 days before the contact, and to under 18-year-olds.

Saffron Walden Reporter: Covid-19 vaccination vials are in the district.Covid-19 vaccination vials are in the district. (Image: Simon Ogle)

Dr Mike Gogarty said: “The vaccine is the best defence against Covid-19 and is helping us to get back to the things we love. Now there’s another good reason to take it: if you get vaccinated you won’t have to isolate.

“You can continue to work and meet people but please, still be careful.

"The vaccine is safe and effective: it massively reduces your risk of illness or death. But you could still have caught Covid-19 and be infectious without knowing.

"If you are a contact, to keep Covid in check, observe social distancing wherever you can, keep washing your hands, and cover your face. You may wish to think twice about meeting vulnerable people if you know you are a contact of a case.”

In the UK, 75 percent of the UK population are now double jabbed.


In Essex, 83 percent of eligible residents – more than one million - have had their first dose and 70 percent are double jabbed.

Saffron Walden Reporter: Archive: Dora Hunter and her son in law at a vaccination centreArchive: Dora Hunter and her son in law at a vaccination centre (Image: S Ogle)

Data retrieved on Friday (August 13) stated that in Uttlesford, 87.7 percent of people have had their first dose (66,549 people) and 76.5 percent are double jabbed (58,112).

In Braintree, it's 86.3 percent (108,297) and 73.9 percent (92,755). In Chelmsford, the numbers are 84.8 percent (129,248) and 72.2 percent (110,017).

From Monday, double vaccinated health and care workers who are close contacts of cases will be able to routinely return to work, provided they have had a negative PCR test, though they will need to take daily LFD tests for 10 days as a precaution.

Staff working with clinically extremely vulnerable patients or service users will need a workplace risk assessment before they return to work.

The workplace daily contact testing scheme will continue. Testing sites will offer daily testing as an alternative to self-isolation for close contacts who are not double jabbed.

The NHS Covid-19 app will be updated to reflect the changes.

Other Covid-19 data:

Data from Public Health England provided on August 10, which was gathered on August 5, is the latest data available. It shows:

In Uttlesford, there were 250.82 new cases per 100,000, down from 259.58 per 100,000 the previous week. This is down from the peak in December 2020 when there were 780.94 new cases per 100,000 of people testing positive for Covid-19.

In Braintree, there were 203.15 new cases per 100,000 of Covid-19, down from 214.29 per 100,000 the previous week, and down from the peak in December 2020 of 1,074.71 per 100,000.

In Chelmsford, there were 204.04 new cases per 100,000, down from 264.57 the previous week, and down from the peak in December 2020 of 1,042.60 per 100,000.

Hospital beds

The number of people in Essex hospital beds with Covid-19 at 8am on August 10 was 101. This is down on the previous week when there were 119. The peak in January 2021 had 1,441 in hospital beds with Covid-19.

Covid-19 in Essex by age

The largest group with new cases of Covid-19 on August 5 was the 20-49 year age bracket (1,813 people), down on the previous week of 1,888 cases.

During the same timeframe, there were 871 cases in the under 20s (previous week 1,162); 480 cases in those age 50-69 (573 the previous week); 143 cases in the 70 plus age group (125 the previous week).

At the peak in December 2020, there were 9,152 people aged 20-49 new cases who tested positive for Covid-19. The second highest group was 50-69 year olds (4,592), followed by 20-49 year olds (2,689), and 70 plus year olds (1,800).