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Coronavirus UK: 950 new cases and 49 deaths from the official toll


Coronavirus cases rose to a six-week high in the UK today as officials announced an additional 950 people had tested positive for the life-threatening disease.

Health Department statistics show that 835 Britons are now diagnosed each day – with the seven-day rolling average rising steadily since falling to a four-month low on July 8 (546).

The daily number of cases is the highest since 1,006 were recorded on June 26th. On August 3, 938 more infections were confirmed and 892 reported yesterday.

The numbers reinforce fears of a second wave. Nicola Sturgeon admitted today that the coronavirus-R rate in Scotland has risen and could be as high as the dreaded levels at which an outbreak could get out of hand again.

Although the case curve is rising again in the UK, deaths have yet to follow. Health chiefs announced 45 more deaths from Covid-19 today – the official number of victims rose to 46,413.

An average of 59 patients succumb to the disease every day. It's slightly higher than yesterday's 58 value, but remains lower than the daily average of 64 last Thursday.

And the number of patients being hospitalized has not yet increased, confirming claims by top scientists that the outbreak is not getting worse and that cases are only increasing because more patients are tested.

As of August 4, only 85 coronavirus patients were enrolled for NHS care across the UK – a number that barely changed in July. In the darkest days of the British crisis in April, around 3,500 patients had to be treated in hospital every day.

Thousands of coronavirus deaths are set to be removed from the official government census following an urgent review of their count, reported today. One "mistake" meant that all survivors in England would eventually be counted as victims – even if they were hit by a bus months after being infected.

In other developments today:

  • NHS Test and Trace is getting worse and worse when it comes to tracking down contacts of infected Covid-19 patients. The government admitted this under increasing pressure to improve the system before winter.
  • Nicola Sturgeon admitted the R-rate in Scotland has risen to one and warned that infection numbers are expected to continue to rise despite a lockdown in Aberdeen.
  • Bank of England warned unemployment will rise by a million in months as coronavirus ravages the economy – but acknowledged the downturn may not be as apocalyptic as feared;
  • Coronavirus cases continued to decline after some lockdown measures were eased and infections halved, according to the results of a large May-July study.
  • Ministers spent more than £ 150 million buying millions of face masks from a small investment company that NHS medics cannot use.
  • Home buyers who live in big cities are planning their escape to the countryside as a property website reported a 125 percent increase in people planning to move to villages after the coronavirus lockdown.

Thousands of coronavirus deaths "wiped off official government toll"

Thousands of coronavirus deaths to be removed from the government's official census, it was claimed today.

Health Secretary Matt Hancock ordered an urgent review of the daily death toll in England due to a "statistical error" last month.

Scientists found that Public Health England's methods resulted in ministers counting victims as those who died after ever testing positive for Covid-19 – even if they were hit by a bus months later after the Had conquered disease.

It would have meant that technically no one could ever recover from the virus and all of England's 265,000 patients confirmed would have at some point attributed their deaths to the disease.

The error reportedly reduced up to 4,000 deaths from the official figure of 41,749 in England. One of the leading experts who uncovered the bug told MailOnline that his "best guess" was that more than 1,000 people had been falsely recorded deaths from Covid-19.

Health ministry chiefs announced yesterday that an additional 892 people had tested positive for the virus, bringing the rolling seven-day average to 820.

For comparison: The previous day the rate was 802 – that was the first time in more than a month that it had exceeded 800. The rate has been rising for over a fortnight amid growing fears of a resurgence.

Government statistics show that the official size of the outbreak in the UK is now 307,184. However, the actual size of the outbreak is estimated to be in the millions based on antibody test data.

Professor Carl Heneghan, director of the Center for Evidence-Based Medicine at Oxford University, claimed this week that Covid-19 cases are not really increasing – despite government numbers showing an upward trend.

He said the rising infection rates were due to more people being tested, citing data showing that the number of second pillar tests performed daily rose 80 percent to around 80,000 over the course of July.

The death dates do not indicate how many Covid-19 patients have died within the last 24 hours – it is just how many deaths have been reported and registered with the authorities.

And the number doesn't always match the home country updates. Health Department officials are working on a different time limit which means the daily updates from Scotland and Northern Ireland are out of sync.

The census announced every afternoon by NHS England, which only takes into account deaths in hospitals, does not match the DH numbers as they use a different recording system.

For example, some deaths announced by NHS England bosses have already been counted by the Department of Health, which records deaths "as soon as they become available".

But the death curve is no longer flattening as quickly as it used to be. As of July 18, the average number of daily deaths has been in the 1960s.

123 British people were diagnosed with the infection from a sample size of nearly 160,000 people between June 9 and July 8 – an incidence rate of 0.07 percent. That was almost half less than in May, when 159 out of 120,620 people tested positive (0.13 percent).

Nicola Sturgeon admits that Scotland's R-rate has risen to one

Coronavirus infection rates in Scotland have risen following an outbreak in Aberdeen, Nicola Sturgeon admitted today.

The First Minister said the county's R-rate had increased from 0.6 to 0.9 to 0.6, and new cases had also been found in Glasgow and the Clyde.

A total of 79 cluster-related cases have been confirmed in Aberdeen, which resulted in the city being locked down. Another 30 were examined.

Ms. Sturgeon said she expected the number of infected people in Aberdeen to surge on Friday despite pubs, restaurants and other businesses stuck in mothballs again.

"I know this is a major blow to the city and we all regret having to take this position, but I believe people understand why this is necessary," she said.

"There is just too much uncertainty about this outbreak at the moment that we are not yet confident that we can keep it under control without these additional measures."

It can take several weeks for infected patients to die, which means an increase in deaths in government numbers is not immediately apparent.

NHS England today announced five victims in hospitals across the country. Wales posted three in all settings. No deaths have been recorded in Scotland or Northern Ireland.

It comes after reports announced today that thousands of coronavirus deaths are to be removed from the government's official census.

Health Secretary Matt Hancock ordered an urgent review of the daily death toll in England due to a "statistical error" last month.

Scientists found that Public Health England's methods resulted in ministers counting victims as those who died after ever testing positive for Covid-19 – even if they were hit by a bus months later after the Had conquered disease.

It would have meant that technically no one could ever recover from the virus and all of England's 265,000 patients confirmed would have at some point attributed their deaths to the disease.

The error reportedly reduced up to 4,000 deaths from the official figure of 41,749 in England.

One of the leading experts who uncovered the bug told MailOnline that his "best guess" was that more than 1,000 people had been falsely recorded deaths from Covid-19.

Mr Hancock will align the numbers with Scotland and Northern Ireland, which attribute Covid-19 deaths only if they occur within a month of their diagnosis.

The Minister of Health is expected to announce the new measurement by the end of the week following the two-week review of the counting fiasco.

The statistical error was reported by Professor Carl Heneghan of Oxford University and Dr. Yoon Loke from the University of East Anglia revealed.

Professor Heneghan, director of the center for evidence-based medicine at the prestigious university, told the sun: “It is a sensible decision. There is no point in attributing deaths to Covid 28 days after infection.

Coronavirus cases continued to decline after some lockdown measures were relaxed

Coronavirus cases continued to decline after some lockdown measures were eased, a large study found today.

123 British people were diagnosed with the infection from a sample size of nearly 160,000 people between June 9 and July 8 – an incidence rate of 0.07 percent. That was almost half less than in May, when 159 out of 120,620 people tested positive (0.13 percent).

Health Secretary Matt Hancock said research showed we were able to keep infection rates down because some restrictions were lifted.

Non-essential stores were allowed to reopen on June 15, and ministers allowed single-person households to mingle with other homes for the first time since the lockdown was introduced on March 23.

However, the impact of the July 4th changes – when the six-foot social distancing rule was cut in half and pubs, restaurants and cinemas reopened – won't be felt until the next report from the Imperial College London team.

According to official government statistics, the cases seem to have slowly crept in since “Super Saturday”. Around 800 people contract the virus every day – after a four-month low of 546 on July 8.

The same study also found that more than eight out of ten people who tested positive for coronavirus in June and July had no symptoms.

Nicola Sturgeon admitted today that coronavirus infection rates in Scotland have increased following an outbreak in Aberdeen.

The First Minister said the county's R-rate had increased from 0.6 to 0.9 to 0.6, and new cases had also been found in Glasgow and the Clyde.

A total of 79 cluster-related cases have been confirmed in Aberdeen, which resulted in the city being locked down. Another 30 were examined.

Ms. Sturgeon said she expected the number of infected people in Aberdeen to surge on Friday despite pubs, restaurants and other businesses stuck in mothballs again.

"I know this is a big blow to the city and we all regret our having to take that position, but I think people understand why this is necessary," she said.

"There is just too much uncertainty about this outbreak at the moment that we are not yet confident that we can keep it under control without these additional measures."

Ms. Sturgeons' warning came hours after a large study found coronavirus cases continued to decline after some lockdown measures were relaxed.

123 Brits were diagnosed with the infection from a sample size of nearly 160,000 people between June 9 and July 8 – an incidence rate of 0.07 percent.

That was almost half less than in May, when 159 out of 120,620 people tested positive (0.13 percent).

Health Secretary Matt Hancock said research showed we were able to keep infection rates down because some restrictions were lifted.

Non-essential stores were allowed to reopen on June 15, and ministers allowed single-person households to mingle with other homes for the first time since the lockdown was introduced on March 23.

However, the impact of the July 4th changes – when the two-meter social distancing rule was cut in half and pubs, restaurants and cinemas reopened – won't be felt until the next report from the Imperial College London team.

The same study also found that more than eight in ten people who tested positive for coronavirus in June and July had no symptoms.

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