The leader of Enfield Council has urged people to play their part in keeping the elderly and vulnerable safe from coronavirus as it rolls out its pandemic plan.

According to the latest figures, there have been a total of six recorded cases in Enfield, with 1,391 across the UK and 35 deaths.

Cllr Nesil Caliskan, who leads the Labour-run council, said many people would be feeling anxious and worried, but sought to reassure people that the authority is working hard to do everything it can to be prepared.

Cllr Caliskan said: “According to official statistics, Enfield currently has six recorded cases of Coronavirus, including a new-born baby at North Middlesex Hospital. Sadly, this figure is expected to rise rapidly. Our thoughts are with those who have already been affected by the illness.

"Current evidence indicates that most cases are mild but people who are older and with weaker immune systems due to underlying health conditions, such as heart disease, are more likely to experience severe symptoms. Children and young people appear to be less affected.

"I know that many of us are feeling anxious and worried. I wanted to reassure you that Enfield Council is working hard to do everything we can locally to be prepared.

"Enfield Council has invoked our pandemic plan and the Enfield Borough Resilience Forum (EBRF) met earlier this week. In addition, the Infection & Pandemic Committee (IPC) will be meeting to ensure that Enfield residents are as safe as possible as the outbreak escalates. The group includes our local NHS partners, representatives from our Adult Social Care, Children’s Services and Emergency Planning teams, as well as Public Health England.

"London Councils are taking guidance from the national government and experts on necessary steps in order to delay the spread and be prepared for what lies ahead. The Prime Minister has confirmed that the UK has now moved from the ‘containment phase’, to the ‘delay phase’. The advice is that people with a persistent cough or fever should self-isolate for seven days. It is also expected that further advice on mass gatherings and public events will be provided shortly.

"It is essential for all of us to think about how we can play our part in helping to keep our community safe by reducing the risk of spreading the virus. It is particularly important to think about how to avoid exposing elderly and vulnerable residents to the risk of infection.

"As a council, we are increasing our cleaning regimes across all our sites, including offices, libraries and community centres. We are in regular contact with the local NHS partners and adult social care providers to make sure that we are well equipped to respond to the needs of our residents. The council has also been working to spread the message about good hygiene:

Remember that your ward councillors are there to offer help and support to our communities, so please do not hesitate to contact them.”

Cllr Caliskan represents the Jubilee ward and was elected as Enfield Council’s leader in May 2018.