a) Nottinghamshire Police
b) Environmental Health
Mat Healy, Nottinghamshire Police, gave an update on the work of the Police in the City since the last Board meeting. He highlighted the following information:
a) 107 fixed penalty notices have been issued across the Force since the last meeting, 75 of which were issued in the City. The majority of these related to people attending large gatherings.
b) Restrictions on hospitality and the night-time economy have been relaxed in accordance with the Government’s Roadmap. Outdoor hospitality has opened up and a number of premises that would not normally operate outdoor space now have pavement licences. There is currently a 3000 person capacity for outdoor hospitality in the City.
c) Since the relaxation of restrictions there have generally been good levels of compliance with no significant issues. The Police are working with Community Protection colleagues on any licensing infringements that do occur.
d) The next stage in easing of restrictions will take place on 17 May, including reopening of indoor hospitality. This will mean an increase to the outdoor capacity of 3,500 and an indoor capacity of 6,000 people. Some premises will also be able to operate later than the current time. Licensing Teams have been in touch with venues in preparation for the changes.
e) In response to the easing of restrictions, Nottinghamshire Police is reinstating full night-time resourcing on Friday and Saturday evenings. In the City Centre there will also be an ‘early intervention’ shift to ‘meet and greet’ people and gauge numbers out that evening. Additional neighbourhood officers will also be in place for the first week to support Duty Teams.
f) Planning is taking place with partners for the further easing of restrictions on 21 June 2021.
In response to questions, it was clarified that if members of the public observe what appear to be breaches in Regulations they can report this via the 101 telephone number or online. If Parks staff observe signs of gatherings in parks and open spaces then they are asked to contact the Community Protection Team as soon as possible because it is easier to deal with potential issues at an early stage.
Paul Dales, Chief Environmental Health Officer Nottingham City Council, gave an update on the work of the Environmental Health Team since the last Board meeting. He highlighted the following information:
g) Preparations have been taking place with partners to work with the business community on the next stage in the easing of restrictions on 17 May. This has included attending meetings of PubWatch and with members of the Business Improvement District.
h) Engagement of businesses started with those already open to discuss the changes in restrictions, followed by engaging with those not currently open. Intelligence, such as cross-referencing data on which businesses have downloaded QR codes is being used to inform the programme of engagement.
i) As it has been throughout the pandemic, the Team’s focus is on informing and protecting through engagement and encouragement, but enforcement is used when necessary.
j) Generally, businesses are working hard to prepare for the next stage of reopening.
k) The Team is liaising with event organisers, including in relation to Temporary Event Notices and development of Event Management Plans to make sure that they are aware of the Covid measures required.
l) The Team is also working with sports grounds, such as Notts County Football Club, on the return of spectators to sporting events. The Safety Advisory Group is reviewing plans, which need to meet specific requirements for sports grounds in addition to the standard Covid requirements. Generally, such organisations are being very co-operative.
During subsequent discussion the following points were made:
m) Businesses have learnt a lot over the last year and there is now better availability of equipment such as personal protective equipment. There are also greater links with Business Support Officers in terms of business support and access to business grants. Therefore, lots of businesses are relatively well-prepared but some are still requiring more of a ‘nudge’ approach.
n) Business premises should display a QR code and have other mechanisms to record contact details if a customer cannot scan the QR code.
o) If members of the public observe what they believe to breaches of Covid Regulations then they can report this on the Council’s website and it will be looked into.
The meeting adjourned at 12:10 and reconvened at 12:15pm.
Amanda Sullivan, Nottingham and Nottinghamshire Clinical Commissioning Group, gave an update from an NHS perspective, highlighting the following information:
p) The position is generally positive. The number of hospital beds occupied by patients with Covid-19 continues to decline, although there are still some patients who are seriously ill with the virus. There were 28 admissions relating to Covid-19 in the seven days to 2 May, which compares to 21 in the previous seven days. On 4 May 51 beds were occupied by Covid positive patients compared to 66 on 27 April. Of those 51 beds, 18% were mechanically ventilated. In the week between 29 April and 5 May, there was 1 death in hospital compared to 3 the previous week.
q) Increasing numbers of people are accessing the Emergency Department. It is important that people use the most appropriate service to access care and should call NHS 111 first. This service now has more capabilities, developed during the pandemic, for clinical assessment and can also book appointments for people.
r) The roll out of the vaccination programme locally continues to be successful. People aged over 40 years are being encouraged to book a vaccination appointment, and outreach and engagement work with specific communities is taking place to support this.
s) Current vaccination rates in the City are:
a. 80+ = 90% (79.8% second dose)
b. 75-79 = 98.3% (87.8% second dose)
c. 70-74 = 95.3% (83.6% second dose)
d. 65-69 = 88.8% (33.4% second dose)
e. 60-64 = 92.2% (15.8% second dose)
f. 55-59 = 90.3% (15.3% second dose)
g. 50-54 = 84.2% (13.6% second dose)
h. 45-49 = 69.4% (12.3% second dose)
i. Under 45s = 20% (6.3% second dose)
t) The vaccination booking process has been streamlined and appointments at both national and local centres can be booked in the same way.
u) The focus of the vaccination programme is now on delivering second doses of the vaccine. The rates for second doses amongst older age groups is really good, but there is still more to do. Everyone is strongly encouraged to get their second dose as this offers the best level of protection.
During subsequent discussion the following points were raised:
v) There are clear links between the people hospitalised for reasons related to Covid-19 and those who have not been vaccinated. People who have been vaccinated have a significantly reduced risk of needing to go to hospital. It is important that the effectiveness of the vaccination is well communicated.
w) The Vaccination Bus continues to operate. It is moving into different locations and will also revisit some areas that it has already been to. The location of the bus is driven by data.