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Latest updates on COVID-19 in Dorset

With local agencies now playing a lead role in identifying and responding to local coronavirus outbreaks, we are now publishing weekly updates on this page to keep residents, businesses and partner agencies informed of the latest COVID-19 situation in the county.

The updates will include the number of cases in both the Dorset Council and Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole Council areas over the latest 7-day period, the latest local case rates in comparison to regional and national rates, the position on key settings like care homes and schools, as well as any other key information and reminders about social distancing measures.

Updated: 6 August 2020

During the summer period and spells of hot weather, we are continuing to work with local businesses and partner agencies to ensure that the tourism and hospitality sector has measures in place to reopen safely whilst protecting staff and customers.

We know many people are enjoying meeting friends and family and getting out and about more. It's important that everyone continues with social distancing, handwashing and other measures in order to keep the transmission of the virus low. Please remember:

  • Only meet one other household at a time indoors (that includes in places like pubs and restaurants)
  • Only meet in groups of up to six people from any households outdoors
  • Stay 2 metres apart from anyone who isn't in your household or support bubble
  • Wear a face covering where required 

Public Health Dorset's Assistant Director, Rachel Partridge, gives an update on the Dorset picture about COVID-19.

Overall picture in Dorset

Dorset and Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole (BCP) Councils are experiencing low numbers of cases compared with many other areas in England. The current risk of a second peak is currently considered to be low.


The table below shows the number of confirmed positive cases of COVID-19 in the BCP Council and Dorset Council areas in the latest 7-day period.

The number of coronavirus cases in the Dorset and BCP Council areas
 Time periodCases in BCP Council area Cases in Dorset Council area 
 28 Jul - 3 Aug 20  2  6

Case rates

The table below shows the case rates per 100,000 of the population for the BCP Council and Dorset Council areas, the South West region and England in the latest 7-day period This period is earlier than the above time period so we can make a comparison to the national figure.

Case rates for BCP Council, Dorset Council, South West and England
 Time periodBCP Council Dorset Council  South WestEngland 
 24 - 30 Jul 20  1.8  1.3  4.5  9

Care homes

There are a very small number of care homes with positive COVID cases in the county. These are being monitored closely and are all currently under control.  

A local care home visiting policy has been developed. The current assessment is that due to the low number of cases and transmission in the area, it is safe for care homes in Dorset to resume visits providing national guidance is adhered to. 


The national estimate of R is below 1, and current advice is that it is safe for schools to return as long as the guidance is followed to maintain social distancing and hygiene.