But Torbay's figures surge
Covid rates have risen slightly across Devon, fuelled by a sharp rise in cases in Torbay.
In the latest complete seven day period (to Sunday 9 January) the county recorded 13,994 new cases, 191 (1.4 per cent) more than in the previous week.
The increase is largely due to a steep rise in infections in Torbay. The area recorded 1,868 cases, 441 (31 per cent) more than the previous week. The infection rate in the Bay is now 1,371 per 100,000 of the population, the highest rate in Devon.
The Devon County Council area, which excludes Plymouth and Torbay, saw cases fall by 113 (one per cent), recording 8,557 infections: a rate of 1,056 per 100,000.
Plymouth recorded 3,569 cases, 173 fewer (five per cent) than the previous week. The city’s infection rate, 1,358 per 100,000, is only slightly behind Torbay’s.
There are small reasons for optimism. On Wednesday 11 January, 99,652 cases were recorded across the UK – the first time the daily infection number has been below 100,000 since 22 December last year.
The most recent data from Tuesday 4 January showed 174 patients in Devon’s hospitals with covid, an increase of over 50 from a week ago. More than half (92) are at Derriford Hospital in Plymouth.
Elsewhere, 37 are at the RD&E in Exeter, 28 in Torbay, 10 in North Devon and seven at Devon Partnership mental health trust sites. Of the total number of patients, 13 are in ventilation beds
Fourteen people died within 28 days of receiving a positive covid test across Devon in the most recent complete seven-day period (to Sunday 9 January), down by four from the same time last month.
Eight people died in the Devon County Council area. Three deaths were recorded in Plymouth and in Torbay.
Across Devon, 1,486 people have now died within 28 days of a positive covid test since the pandemic began.
Eighty-eight per cent of people aged 12 and above have had their first dose of a vaccine in the Devon County Council area, with 83 per cent receiving both doses. Sixty-nine per cent have now had their booster.
In Plymouth, 85 per cent have had one dose, while 78 per cent have had both. Fifty-seven per cent have had the booster.
In Torbay, 86 per cent have received one dose, while 80 per cent have had both jabs. Sixty-four per cent have had their third vaccine.
The national rates are 91, 83 and 63 per cent respectively.