Cumbria has seen significant increases in Covid cases in its care homes.

Reportedly, 43 of the county's 152 nursing homes and care residencies have seen outbreaks of the virus among residents.

This includes Cumbria Care facilities and private sector homes.

The council vowed to tackle the outbreaks and do all it could to bring down the infection rate in nursing homes and keep the public safe.

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A spokesperson for the council said: “We have unfortunately seen a significant increase in the number of outbreaks affecting the county’s care homes since Christmas and this reflects the large increase in Covid-19 infections in the community.

"As of January, 18, 43 of the county’s 152 care homes and nursing homes across Cumbria Care and the Independent sector have active outbreaks.

"This has resulted in a higher number of residents testing positive for Covid and there are significant numbers of staff who have tested positive or are self-isolating due to track and trace requirements or shielding.

"The number of individual Covid positive care home residents is still well below the peak of early last year, but the number of homes experiencing outbreaks is at its highest level.

"Some outbreaks are as a response to staff testing positive rather than residents.

"Importantly, regular testing is in place across all care homes and that is ensuring that outbreaks are identified as quickly as possible.

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“This is an extremely challenging situation and Cumbria County Council is working very closely with all relevant agencies (local NHS providers, GP’s, District nurses etc) to provide multi-agency support to homes where required.

"This includes infection prevention and control support and arranging additional emergency staffing where required to ensure residents can continue to be cared for safely despite staff absences.

"Staffing is fragile across community care services as well and we recognise that staff are doing incredible work in very difficult circumstances and we would like to thank every one of them providing care across Cumbria.

“Positively, the vaccination programme is progressing well, with rapidly increasing numbers of care home residents and staff receiving their first dose.

"The expectation is that all staff and residents across both Cumbria Care and the independent sector will be offered the vaccination by the end of this week.

"This gives increasing confidence that the impact of outbreaks will be able to be kept to a minimum in the future.

"But right now the pressure on our care sector is intense and every effort is being made to keep people safe.”