A second case of coronavirus has been confirmed in Tameside.
However, the unknown patient's diagnosis is understood not to be linked to the first case in the borough, which was announced last weekend.
A statement from Public Health England says: "We have received confirmation of one new COVID-19 case in Tameside. This case is not linked to the previous case that was announced on March 8.
“We are continuing to work closely with Public Health England, the NHS and all our health and care partners to prevent further spread of the virus and we remain in the `containment’ phase.
“As with the previous case, Public Health England will be contacting those who have been in close contact with the resident and will advise any individuals on any action required.
“Anyone who is not contacted by Public Health England does not need to take any action at this time other than to continue to follow good hygiene and hand washing advice.”
Dr Jeanelle De Gruchy, Director of Public Health at Tameside Council, said: "We have received confirmation of one new COVID-19 case in the borough. This case is not linked to the previous case that was announced on 8 March.
“We understand that the announcement of additional cases may cause concern but we want to reassure residents that we are continuing to work closely with Public Health England, the NHS and all our health and care partners to prevent further spread of the virus.
“Due to patient confidentiality, the exact location and details of the case cannot be published. We continue to stress the importance of regular hand washing to residents."
Stalybridge and Hyde MP Jonathan Reynolds broke the news on his Facebook page, but he urged people not to panic.
Details of the person involved are currently unknown.
The MP wrote: "It is important to note: 1) Risk to the public remains low, 2) Hand washing remains our best protection, 3) Patients’ details and locations will not be released for privacy reasons, 4) Call NHS 111 of you feel unwell and follow their guidance.
"The balance between strong action to the delay the peak of the viral transmission and “keep calm and carry on” is a delicate one. It’s important to keep supporting local businesses whilst also taking sensible precautions to protect vulnerable residents.
"I know this is a worrying time- it is worth stressing again that in the overwhelming majority of cases this illness is not life threatening."
Earlier today, an elderly couple from Tameside, who have just returned from a holiday in Spain, rang the Reporter to tell us they can't get tested for coronavirus, despite showing all the symptoms.
Senior Tameside councillor Oliver Ryan has also argued that upcoming local and mayoral elections should be postponed over the coronavirus pandemic as going to the polls would be 'too much of a risk'.
Meanwhile, former Ashton GP, chair of Tameside and Glossop Healthwatch and Honorary Vice President of BMA, Dr Kailash Chand OBE has offered advice and guidance following the coronavirus outbreak.
The first case in Tameside was confirmed last Sunday, when a resident in the borough was diagnosed with COVID-19. Both he and his family are self isolating at home.
While risk to the public is still only low to moderate, the government are reminding people of the NHS’s advice to:
- wash your hands with soap and water often – do this for at least 20 seconds
- always wash your hands when you get home or into work
- use hand sanitiser gel if soap and water are not available
- cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or your sleeve (not your hands) when you cough or sneeze
- put used tissues in the bin straight away and wash your hands afterwards
- try to avoid close contact with people who are unwell
And not to touch your eyes, nose and mouth if your hands are not clean.
The symptoms of COVID-19 are a cough, a high temperature and shortness of breath.
There has now been 519 confirmed cases in the UK, including 10 deaths. The number of cases has increased by 134 in the last 24 hours.