THE director of public health for Shropshire Council has urged caution despite as England prepares to lift all Covid restrictions.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson said, on Monday, February 21 that all remaining Covid-19 restrictions in England would be lifted, and the new rules came into place this week.

But Rachel Robinson, Shropshire Council’s director of public health said the pandemic is not over.

She said: "We must learn to live safely with it and continue to manage our risks.

"This means things like considering whether it is safer to wear a face covering in crowded areas or when you meet with someone vulnerable. "Keeping up to date with vaccinations and boosters is also important.

"Free tests are still available until 31 March.

"Please consider using these when you meet with people who are more high risk."

Simon Jones, Shropshire Council’s cabinet member for adult social care and public health, added: "We are in a very different place to where we were two years ago when the pandemic began.

"Thanks to all your sacrifices and the incredible vaccination programme, we are finally in a place where life can really start to return to normal.

"However, while the law has changed, we are still encouraging residents to be cautious.

"There were 42 people being treated for Covid-19 in hospital during this time, which shows that there are still vulnerable people out there who will become seriously ill.

"We must protect these people and keep the pressure off the NHS."

During the period from February 11 to February 17, there were 1,374 new Covid-19 cases reported.

There were two Covid-19 related deaths in hospital and 42 hopsital beds were occupied by Covid-19 patients.

The seven day infection rate for Shropshire was 422.2 per 100,000.

For the West Midlands, it was 378.5 and for England as a whole, it was 443.1.