Tighter restrictions to curb the spread of coronavirus in Northern Ireland’s north west are “inevitable”, Foyle MP Colum Eastwood has said.
Of 819 confirmed cases in the Derry and Strabane council area, 355 have been diagnosed in the past seven days.
The number of cases in the region per 100,000 people is almost three times that of the NI-wide figure.
The SDLP leader said everyone in the region now “needs to be very careful”.
He discussed the surge in cases in the north west with Health Minister Robin Swann on Monday night.
“I firmly believe there are going to be more restrictions coming,” Mr Eastwood told BBC Radio Foyle.
“I think that is inevitable but we don’t have to wait for more restrictions.
“Each and every one of us individually has to be very very careful, to restrict our movements or stay away from people who are vulnerable.”
The number of cases in the Derry and Strabane area has continued to rise sharply in recent days – it now has 235 positive cases per 100,000 inhabitants.
The rate across the North of Ireland is 80 cases per 100,000, according to Department of Health figures.
Dr Tom Black, the chair of the British Medical Association (BMA) here, has warned that complacency is driving the north west spike.
The Derry GP said people have not been adhering to public health guidance in “the way they need to”.
He expects an increase in people being admitted to hospital and patients needing intensive care in the coming weeks.
“We are in a phase where we know this is going to get a lot worse, we know that we are in a second wave, we know that we have to reduce transmission by adhering to the social distancing, face coverings, hand washing and masks,” he said.
“When I look around the town I don’t see people adhering to it the way they need to.”
He urged the public to reconnect with the public health guidance.
“I am fairly confident that this community, who did it very well first time around, will do it again.”
Despite people being tired and fed up, he added, “this has to be done again”.
Public health chiefs continue to urge the public to wash their hands regularly and often, wear a face covering in shops and other indoor settings and maintain a social distance of two metres as much as possible to stop the spread of the deadly virus.