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Coronavirus UK: Daily cases increase 39% to 33,470 in a week


The UK today announced another 33,470 positive coronavirus cases – 39 percent more than last Thursday – despite indicators suggesting the outbreak is slowing.

The number of cases is the highest since the Covid-19 outbreak began and comes a week after the second national lockdown began in England. It's an increase from 22,950 yesterday.

Another 563 deaths were recorded, bringing the total coronavirus deaths to 50,928. That's a 66.5 percent increase over the 340 deaths announced last Thursday.

Unofficial statistics suggest that the country's outbreak slowed and lessened even before the November 5 lockdown began, and is expected to continue to shrink during November's strict regulations.

Though today's number is high, the Department of Health's case numbers are not tied to a specific day – the 33,000 infections announced today come from tests conducted on multiple days in the past week or more. That doesn't mean all of these people tested positive today.

Test data shows that the number of people who tested positive increased on Monday, November 9th, when 24,642 people who took swabs were infected. The tests for that day made up 11,685 of today's tests, and are significantly higher than the roughly 20,000 on each of the previous two days of the week.

It is also known that the test system does not record all people infected with Covid-19, as many never get symptoms. This means the number of people who test positive can fluctuate without fundamentally changing the size of the outbreak.

Today's surge was not explained by the Ministry of Health, and experts could not explain the sudden surge. According to Public Health England, many of the cases came from people who were likely infected with the virus before the lockdown.

Professor Stephen Powis, the medical director of NHS England, said in a briefing this afternoon that it was "important not to focus on just a single day" but to examine a variety of data sources.

The REACT mass test study conducted today by the government found that the spread of the virus slowed earlier this month, while scientists behind the Covid Symptom Study now estimate the R number to be below one.

However, experts agree that the number of people currently infected with the virus is very high – over half a million by best estimates – which was part of Boris Johnson's rationale for introducing Lockdown 2.0.

Data from the Office of National Statistics last Friday suggested these may be gradually weakening before lockdown began under the three-tier local rules.

In other coronavirus news:

  • Chancellor Rishi Sunak has hinted that he could bring Eat Out to Help Out back in the New Year to bail out the economy again – but it will conflict with diets in January and a government fight against junk food.
  • Researchers in England have found that blacks are twice as likely to get Covid-19 as whites but are not at a higher risk of death if they have it – but Asians have a higher death rate.
  • Number 10 said Economic Secretary Alok Sharma and NHS England Medical Director Professor Stephen Powis will host a press conference on Downing Street this afternoon.
  • The capital gains tax could be widened by the government to fill the void the coronavirus epidemic has left on UK bank accounts.
  • Deputy Chief Medical Officer Professor Jonathan Van-Tam has admitted that millions of people may not be getting the best coronavirus vaccine possible because they are used when they are ready – the nation cannot afford to wait for the best, he said ;
  • A testing expert said there was "absolutely no chance" that the rapid coronavirus tests launched in Liverpool and elsewhere for Operation Moonshot will bring the UK back to normal after a study found they were 77% accurate.
  • Health Secretary Helen Whately said the NHS Test and Trace phone hotline misses 25,000 calls a day. Only 56 percent of the calls are actually answered by the Serco system.
  • A study by Public Health England found that people with learning disabilities are up to 30 times more likely to die from Covid-19 than people without.

Scientists from the Covid Symptom Study claimed today that the R-rate of coronavirus across the UK is now 0.9, meaning the outbreak has started to shrink and the "end in sight" is in sight

Scientists from the Covid Symptom Study claimed today that the R-rate of coronavirus across the UK is now 0.9, meaning the outbreak has started to shrink and the "end in sight" is in sight

Professor Tim Spector, who runs the Covid Symptom Study, said new coronavirus infections are falling across England and are now - for the whole of the UK - around 36,000 a day

Professor Tim Spector, who runs the Covid Symptom Study, said new coronavirus infections are falling across England and are now – for the whole of the UK – around 36,000 a day

Professor Powis said this afternoon, "It is important to look at the cases reported over several days and not just take one day in isolation."

“Because of the way Test and Trace works, it's important not to focus on just one day. The second, of course, is that there is other data that needs to be investigated – the Office of National Statistics has been studying Covid infections in part of the population every week. I'm sure it will report again tomorrow and the REACT study, a similar study by Imperial College, did the same.

"So I think we're not looking at a single day, we're not looking at a single record." These records in particular are going to be very important as they are not affected by some of the things around Test and Trace, those who come up … they look at people who are essentially chosen at random from across the population.

“But it is clear that infection rates have increased and it is really important to lower those infection rates.

"That will reduce the number of deaths, ease the pressure on hospitals, and prevent the long-term effects like long-term Covid."

Public Health England Medical Director Dr. Yvonne Doyle said, “The highest rate of infection is still seen in the younger generations, but worryingly, it is rising rapidly in those 80+, who are most at risk of poor outcomes.

“The measures we are taking help protect all of us, and anyone can have a serious illness with this virus.

& # 39; The majority of the cases reported today were from tests done on November 9th and 10th, including infections acquired in the days leading up to new action on November 5th.

"Limiting contact with others will help stop the virus from spreading and protect the people we love."

The REACT-1 project, which wiped tens of thousands of people every week, found today that November daily infections had slowed significantly after a wave of new cases in the previous two months, and they even suggested the R Rate fell to 0.85 earlier this month.

Imperial College London experts behind the investigation said the decline was "seen across the country, both north and south, and not being driven by any region" – suggesting the three-tier curb system is just beginning Comes into force before the ministers gave in and pressed the lockdown panic button.

However, the scientists estimated that the virus was still infecting 100,000 people in England each day before the lockdown, and that at some point a million people will have the disease.

They said the second economically crippling shutdown was justified because the gearbox was still too high.

However, on October 25, the Imperial team forecast that there were 96,000 infections per day and that the outbreak would double every nine days – dire predictions that SAGE used as evidence of the draconian measures now being imposed on the country.

While 100,000 is still much higher than officials wanted, it signals that the virus has already started to slow down.

The NHS England Medical Director, Professor Stephen Powis

Business Secretary Alok Sharma

NHS England Medical Director Professor Stephen Powis (left) and Economic Secretary Alok Sharma (right) held a press conference on Downing Street this afternoon. Commenting on the day's positive tests, Professor Powis said it was "important not to focus on a single day".

NHS professor Stephen Powis, who presented this graph, said the number of people hospitalized with Covid-19 rose from 3,827 to 12,700 in one month

NHS professor Stephen Powis, who presented this graph, said the number of people hospitalized with Covid-19 rose from 3,827 to 12,700 in one month

The REACT-1 project, which wiped tens of thousands of people every week, found that infections had slowed significantly in November after a wave of new cases in the two previous months

The REACT-1 project, which wiped tens of thousands of people every week, found that infections had slowed significantly in November after a wave of new cases in the two previous months

Professor Steve Riley and Professor Paul Elliott, the study directors at Imperial, said they actually expected a much higher level of infection due to the rate of increase at the beginning of the month.

COVID TEST POSITIVITY DROP FOR THE FIRST TIME IN THREE MONTHS

The percentage of coronavirus tests that are positive has fallen for the first time in almost three months in England, according to official figures.

It raises further hopes that the country will get a better grip on its second wave and may already be in the middle of it.

Experts say one of the most accurate and fairest ways to track virus history is to look at the positivity rates of the tests – the percentage of swabs that come back positive.

When a country has a high positivity rate, it means the centralized system is struggling to keep up with the outbreak. However, a low rate means that only a small portion of the population actually has the disease.

A weekly report published today by Public Health England found that 9.7 percent of the second pillar tests performed in the week ended November 8 returned positive results. That was a decrease of 10.2 percent over the seven days before.

It is the first time since the week leading up to August 2 that the positivity rate for Pillar 2 tests has decreased. Pillar 2 is performed in test centers, drive-through clinics, and in private homes – which makes up the vast majority of all tests.

The first pillar tests – which were done in hospitals – also fell from the week, falling from 4.8 percent to 4.5 percent. It was the first time since the week leading up to August 23 that that number had fallen.

It comes as the UK today announced another 33,470 positive cases – 39 percent more than last Thursday – despite indicators showing the outbreak is slowing.

The number of cases is the highest since the Covid-19 outbreak began and comes a week after the second national lockdown began in England. It's an increase from 22,950 yesterday.

However, unofficial statistics suggest that the country's outbreak slowed and narrowed even before the November 5 lockdown began, and is expected to continue to shrink during strict regulations in November.

They suggested that the three-tier lockdown system may have gone into effect towards the end of October, and that the worse weather and halftime break may have reduced the number of people going out to socialize.

Although infection rates remain high, Professor Riley, an infectious disease expert at Imperial College, said the change in infection levels in early November "could be interpreted as a plateau or gradual decline".

He and his colleague Professor Paul Elliott, an epidemiologist, said it had been difficult figuring out why cases appeared to fall just before the national lockdown and then to rise again.

Semi-annual or colder, wetter weather could have deterred people from socializing and reducing infections, they said, while speculation about a larger lockdown later could have led people to abandon caution and more so around Halloween walk around, which then caused an increase.

However, they both agreed that the rapid rate of increase in early and mid-October did not last into November when the final round of testing – Round 6 – ended.

Numbers from their interim report dated October 29th rocked the country when it was revealed that 96,000 people catch Covid-19 every day and 1.3 percent of the population were infected.

The numbers were an estimated 0.6 percent increase in the infection rate on Round 5 in September, indicating that the second wave had exploded. But the rate at which it got worse has slowed in the latest data.

Professor Riley said in a briefing today: “I think we can say that the level we reached at the end of the sixth round is lower than expected if the trend had continued at the beginning of the sixth round.

"If you average the data, this is more of a plateau than we would have had."

Professor Elliott added, “The prevalence (of the coronavirus) is slightly higher, but not as high as the very rapid increase we reported in our last interim report would have been.

"Last week's ONS report may also have been about a plateau … Even if you look at the symptomatic coverage of Pillar 1 and Pillar 2, there wasn't the same increase. I think it's still rising, but it doesn't rise at the same rate. "

The two agreed that the fact that more areas were forced into third-stage closures in mid-October may have slowed the outbreak's growth.

Professor Riley said, "It could certainly add to the downturn."

But they stood by their calls for a second national lockdown, saying 100,000 daily cases are still too high.

Professor Elliott wrote in the report: “Our latest round of REACT testing provides reliable data on the UK coronavirus situation up to just three days before the country enters the second nationwide lockdown.

"We showed that the prevalence of infection has remained high, adding to the need for people to act to fight infection and control the virus." These important data will be an important basis for determining whether the new measures are effective in containing the growth of the epidemic. "

In more good news, scientists from the Covid Symptom Study claimed today that the R-rate of coronavirus across the UK is now 0.9, meaning the outbreak has started to shrink and the "end in sight" is in sight .

King's College London Epidemiologist Professor Tim Spector, who heads the project, announced today that his latest data shows that the R – the number of people infected by each individual case – is the lowest since August and this rate of new diseases is slowly falling to below 36,000 new infections per day.

Imperial College London experts behind the investigation said the decline was "observable across the country, both north and south, and not one region-driven" - suggesting the three-tier curb system is just beginning Comes into force before the ministers gave in and pressed the lockdown panic button

Imperial College London experts behind the investigation said the decline was "observable across the country, both north and south, and not one region-driven" – suggesting the three-tier curb system is just beginning Comes into force before the ministers gave in and pressed the lockdown panic button

The Covid Symptom Study now suggests that around 35,963 people develop symptomatic Covid-19 every day in the UK, up from 44,000 per day at the end of October. The graph shows how the total number of people with symptomatic Covid-19 per day has also decreased

The Covid Symptom Study now suggests that around 35,963 people develop symptomatic Covid-19 every day in the UK, up from 44,000 per day at the end of October. The graph shows how the total number of people with symptomatic Covid-19 per day has also started to decline

Professor Spector argued that the falling R-rate was evidence that people's behavior during the three-tier lockdown had already started to lower infections, while the effects of England's national restrictions began to be felt in the data in the coming days and weeks will.

The study is based on health reports from more than one million users of the Covid Symptom Study app from health tech company ZOE and coronavirus test results logged by volunteers and official data. Although unofficial, the infection rates and R-value have been consistently estimated since the beginning of the pandemic.

Professor Spector said today: “The R-value for all regions of the UK is now below one, which means that the number of new cases every day is decreasing as each infected case infects less than one new person.

& # 39; The data shows that the second wave peaked in late October when it was 1/1. The number of new cases in the worst affected area, the northwest, is now at the level of early October and has an R value of 0.8.

"This is great news for the UK, and it suggests that public behavior had an impact even before the further lockdown restrictions came in. With the numbers falling and the news of a vaccine, it is feeling more and more like the end." Insight. & # 39;

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