OMICRON will become the dominant strain of Covid soon, according to the county’s public health boss.

On Friday (December 10), the first two cases of the Omicron variant were recorded in Wiltshire. They and their close contacts have been told to self-isolate.

Addressing journalists at today’s (December 14) Covid briefing, public health director, Kate Blackburn said that it is likely there will be more cases in Wiltshire than is confirmed.

Wiltshire Times: Public health director, Kate BlackburnPublic health director, Kate Blackburn

“Omicron will soon become the dominant strain,” she said.

“Omicron is spreading much faster than the Delta variant did, and its important people bare that in mind and take precautions to ensure they keep themselves and their loved ones safe.”

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The public health boss said the new variant is expected to become dominant in the coming days. But for Wiltshire, she could not confirm when this might be.

Wiltshire’s seven-day case rate (as of December 13) is 520.8 where the national average is 510.4.

Meaning the cases per 100,000 in the county continues to be above the England average.

In the last seven days 2,625 new cases of the virus have been recorded; compared with 2,581 in the previous week.

Since the release of last week’s figures six more people have died as a result of Covid-19. Bringing the total number of those who have died to 929.

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In light of the onset of the new variant, Wiltshire Council has urged residents to back the “national mission” and take up the offer of a booster jab.

In a pre-recorded national address, Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced that all adults would be offered a booster jab by the end of the year.

The leader of Wiltshire Council, Richard Clewer said: “The message is clear – please get the booster jab now, as that’s the best way to ensure you and your loved ones are as protected as possible from Omicron.

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“We will support our colleagues at the NHS with this mission in any way we can, as it is in everyone’s best interests and will help to protect our health services, and get us get back to living our lives normally, which is something we all want to do.

“We really appreciate everyone’s support and efforts.”

People are advised to continue to regular wash their hands and wear face coverings when required.