There are now more than 1,000 covid cases in Jersey - and experts are finding it difficult to predict how much larger that number could grow before the current wave ends.
The island reached the milestone of its fourth covid wave yesterday, with seven people recorded as being in hospital with the illness and three in care homes.
Last year, Jersey topped 1,000 on 21 December. At the time, 29 of those cases were in hospital and 66 in care homes. The island faced a hospitality and retail shutdown, and strong restrictions over Christmas and New Year.
In a report published this morning, the Health Minister said the Government's scientific advisers had concluded that any model used to predict how case numbers might change over the coming weeks and months would be "highly uncertain due to the multifactorial nature of the situation."
Between July and now, the Health Minister said the patterns of transmission had been "very unexpected", with "considerable changes in prevalence of age groups and communities", though he noted that "hospital admissions have been essentially constant."
However, having considered analyses conducted in the UK, they did conclude that "further waves of infection are still expected", and that "short-term trajectories to end of 2021 are likely to be driven by behaviour, while future peaks in 2022 are more likely to be due to speed/level of waning immunity and the extent and timing of booster regimes."
The report added: "Many international scenarios suggest an extended period of time with a high number of hospital admissions. Although it is likely that these will remain below levels of January 2021, this could still put pressure on services if waves coincide with high levels of other respiratory illnesses."
With case numbers beginning to sharply rise, the Government this week launched a ‘Keep Jersey in business’ campaign.
Islanders are urged to follow guidance, as set out in the COVID-19 Winter Strategy, to help keep businesses open. Your continued support and behaviour continues to play an important role in supporting protective measures for the Island’s workforces.— Government of Jersey (@GovJersey) November 16, 2021
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To ensure that businesses are not disrupted, while also protecting the health service this winter, the Government is asking that islanders:
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