COVID cases have continued to rise in Dorset and remain at very high levels, the latest figures suggest.

According to the latest data issued by Public Health Dorset, the case rates in the BCP and Dorset council areas are 525.2 and 605.9 respectively.

This compares to figures of 408.3 and 515.0 issued in the last updated on Friday October 22.

The number of people currently in hospital in Dorset with Covid-19 is 52, only one less than was recorded on October 22.

A spokesman from Public Health Dorset said: “The South West region has recently seen very rapid growth in cases and Dorset and BCP case rates are below both the South West and national average.

“There are some signs from the national data that regional and national cases are stabilising so we will continue to monitor this trend and assess the impact on our local situation.

“We know that our health and care system is extremely busy so we must do all we can to prevent any further increase in Covid-19 admissions.”

The number of confirmed cases in the BCP Council area in the past seven days is 2,085, compared to 1,621 cases recorded last week.

Similarly, the Dorset Council area has also seen a rise in confirmed cases, from 1,956 reported cases last week to 2,301 this week.

The spokesman added: “Whilst case rates are high, we’re asking everyone to remember the risks from Covid-19 and do what they can to stop the spread.

“Continue to take twice weekly rapid lateral flow tests – with high transmission locally, your chance of mixing with someone who has Covid-19 is increased, so by taking tests we can help avoid unknowingly passing it on to others.

“When meeting others, think about how you can do so safely - it’s safer to meet outdoors or in well-ventilated spaces where fresh air helps to blow virus particles away.

“It’s still important to wear a mask in indoor spaces and to wash your hands regularly and thoroughly.

“We also continue to encourage everyone to get vaccinated, including taking up the offer of a booster if you’re eligible.”