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Coronavirus: ONS statistics suggest England outbreak still growing but slowing down

The UK today announced 20,530 more coronavirus cases and the deaths of 224 people as official data suggests the country’s outbreak may finally be slowing down.

Government scientists today claimed the crucial R rate has dropped slightly and an array of statistics revealed cases are no longer growing as quickly as they once were, although the epidemic is still surging.

SAGE estimates the reproduction rate for the UK has fallen for the first time in a month, from between 1.3-1.5 to 1.2-1.4. The number – the key measure at the heart of Number 10’s plan to control the virus – must stay below one, or the outbreak will continue to grow.

And the Office for National Statistics, which tracks the size of the Covid-19 outbreak through thousands of random swab tests, today revealed that the number of people catching the coronavirus in England alone every day stood at 35,200 last week.

Despite being a 26 per cent rise on its previous estimate and double that of a fortnight ago, top scientists insisted that the figure was ‘hopeful’ because the speed of growth has clearly dropped. Cases doubled between October 2 and 9, then jumped by two thirds (62 per cent) the following week to 27,900 per day, according to the ONS data, which is considered the most reliable indicator of the true size of the crisis. 

And in other promising developments, MailOnline today revealed that almost half of local authorities in England saw their coronavirus infection rate drop last week. Newcastle and Nottingham, which are both battling some of the largest Covid-19 outbreaks in England, witnessed some of the biggest drops.

The data echoes comments by the UK’s chief scientific adviser, Sir Patrick Vallance, who said yesterday that there are now signs local lockdowns are starting to work and that case numbers are beginning to show ‘flattening’ in some areas.

Despite the shred of optimism, SAGE advisers warned that they were ‘almost certain that the epidemic continues to grow exponentially across the country’.

The data come as more draconian lockdown rules are springing up across the UK. Warrington in Cheshire today became the latest to confirm it will impose Tier Three measures soon, while badly-hit parts of Nottinghamshire also face the threat of tighter curbs to strangle the virus. 

Scientists have repeatedly called for a ‘circuit breaker’ national lockdown to try and stop the spiralling outbreak and ‘turn back the clock’ to allow the test and trace system to catch up and to prevent hospitals getting overwhelmed. Wards in the North West are filling up fast and some now have more patients now than in April.

In other coronavirus news:

  • Scotland has unveiled a five-tier lockdown system that ranges from relaxed rules based on social distancing to a possible full nationwide shutdown like the one in the spring;
  • Europe is now recording more than 200,000 cases of Covid-19 per day, making up around half of all the world’s positive test results each day;
  • Mixed messages are emerging from Downing Street over what will happen at Christmas, with No 10 saying families will be allowed to meet but one minister warning it ‘won’t be normal’;
  • Office for National Statistics data show that monthly deaths from Covid-19 rose in September in England and Wales, marking the first time they had increased since April;
  • Public Health England data shows per-person infection rates fell in almost half of all local authorities across the country last week, with the biggest drops in  two of the worst-hit areas, Nottingham and Newcastle.

INFECTION RATES DOWN IN HALF OF ENGLAND’S LOCAL AUTHORITIES

Almost half of local authorities in England saw a drop in coronavirus infections last week, according to an analysis of official data.

Sixty-nine out of 149 councils recorded a dip in their Covid-19 per population case rates in the seven-day spell that ended October 18. For comparison, only two saw a drop in infections in the week ending September 25.  

Public Health England’s weekly surveillance report shows only three recorded surges of more than 50 per cent – 12 times fewer than the week before, when 36 registered large spikes in infections. 

Data last week revealed 41 councils saw their infection rates fall in the week ending October 11, but officials have updated the figures after processing more swabs to reveal only four actually saw a decrease. 

Nonetheless, they showed many more local areas recorded smaller infection rises compared to the week before, suggesting the Tier system, rule of six and 10pm curfew have slammed the brakes onto the UK’s second wave.

England’s infection rate stands at 181 cases per 100,000 people, a 10.8 per cent rise from the week before. This is a significant slowdown from the 30 per cent rise in infections seen previously.

No local area in England has a virus infection rate below 20 per 100,000 – the threshold at which the Government considers imposing quarantine measures on foreign countries.

Stoke-on-Trent, Coventry and Slough are to enter Tier Two restrictions on Saturday, with people banned from mixing with households they do not live with, amid rising cases.

SO WHICH AREAS SAW THE BIGGEST INCREASE IN INFECTION RATES?

  • Telford and Wrekin: 68.5 per cent (81.2 to 136.8 per 100,000)
  • Stoke-on-Trent: 56.8 per cent (118.2 to 185.3 per 100,000)
  • Barnsley: 51.8 per cent (279.9 to 424.9 per 100,000)
  • Slough: 46.4 per cent (92.3 to 135.1 per 100,000)
  • Doncaster: 41.6 per cent (218 to 308.8 per 100,000)
  • Luton: 37.7 per cent (89.7 to 123.4 per 100,000)
  • Isle of Wight: 36 per cent (17.6 to 24 per 100,000)
  • Thurrock: 35.9 per cent (75.1 to 102.1 per 100,000)
  • Southend-on-Sea: 33 per cent (48.1 to 63.9 per 100,000)
  • Herefordshire: 31.5 per cent (37.9 to 49.8 per 100,000) 

Separate predictions by a King’s College London team make a similar estimate, that there are now 36,000 cases per day across the UK, with 28,000 of them in England. 

The data from the King’s study, run with healthcare tech company ZOE, is usually lower than the ONS’s because it estimates only people who get symptoms.

The ONS’s report is based on random mass swab testing across the population of England, which does not take into account whether people feel ill or not. The same people are tested regularly to see how many of them develop Covid-19 over time.  

The weekly report by the Office for National Statistics calculated that a total 433,300 people in England probably had Covid-19 in the week between October 10 and 16. The estimate was up from 336,000 a week earlier, and the projection of new daily infections was up from 27,900.

The independent body did not indicate that there was any change in the upward trend of its estimates, saying: ‘The incidence rate has continued to increase in recent weeks.’

But data in its estimates, which come with large ranges of possible numbers as a caveat – this week suggesting the true number of daily infections could actually be as high as 46,600 or as low as 29,800 – suggest the outbreak is not accelerating as quickly as it was at the start of October.

On October 9, the ONS estimated the number of new daily cases had more than doubled from 8,400 to 17,200 in a week – a 104 per cent increase. 

On October 16, cases surged again to an estimated 27,900 per day – a rise of 62 per cent from the 17,200 the week before. And this week they rose by 26 per cent to 35,200.

Although this clearly shows the outbreak is still growing in size and the virus still spreading further and wider than before, the rate at which cases are increasing is not as fast. 

Professor James Naismith, a biologist at the University of Oxford, told the Press Association: ‘Comparing the average number of infections per day measured by ONS for the week ending October 9 and the week ending October 16 suggests that the doubling time might have increased to three weeks.

‘If so, and I emphasise there are uncertainties, this is a hopeful sign that the rate of increase is slowing down.’ 

SAGE today estimated that the R rate – the reproduction number – of the virus in the UK is between 1.2 and 1.4. In the past week it has fallen in all but one region of England – with it remaining flat in the South West.

It is now creeping towards one in the four worst-hit areas, with lower possible limits of 1.1 in London, the Midlands, the North East and the North West. 

Large parts of these regions are now in Tier Two or Tier Three local lockdown measures, where possible R rates are higher in regions that remain completely or partly in Tier One – the South West, South East and East of England. 

Despite this ray of hope that lockdowns are working, SAGE warned: ‘SAGE is almost certain that the epidemic continues to grow exponentially across the country. 

‘R values for the UK and every region of England remain above 1.0 and growth rates are all positive, so infections continue to grow.’

The group’s estimate comes out once per week but is usually up to three weeks out of date because it can only be calculated by looking back on data that already exists and is reliable.

COVID DEATHS RISE IN SEPTEMBER FOR FIRST TIME SINCE APRIL

The number of people dying of coronavirus in England and Wales rose for the first time in five months in September but it is still only the 19th most common cause of death.

Office for National Statistics data published today show 725 people died with Covid-19 – although not necessarily because of it. In comparison, just 576 fatalities were recorded in August. This was the first time the number had increased since the first wave of disease slammed into the UK in April, when deaths in England and Wales soared from 1,700 to 31,000 in a month. 

Since then, deaths had been more than halving every month but have now started to rise again. But the report reiterated that the number of victims is still ‘significantly below levels’ seen during the spring, when more than 1,000 Covid-19 fatalities were being recorded each day.

Despite coronavirus fatalities increasing, it still no longer ranks as one of the top causes of death. It was the 19th most common in England and 24th in Wales. Dementia was the top cause of death in both England and Wales, accounting for more than one in 10 fatalities, followed by heart disease and lung cancer.

The ONS report comes as official data from the Department of Health also shows deaths are rising again across the UK. The daily average has now risen to 151 after falling to a low of just seven in the summer. Top medical advisers have warned that deaths will continue to rise even if cases start falling because they have been ‘baked in’ among people who have already been infected. 

Data in the report also showed that 2,500 more people than usual died in September but, with fewer than 750 blamed on coronavirus, this meant that at least 1,700 were ‘excess’ deaths which are those thought to have been caused by the pandemic but not directly by Covid-19.

Sir Patrick Vallance, who leads SAGE, yesterday said he was ‘sure’ that the estimates of new cases of coronavirus would rise today, and indicated they were likely to do so again next week. But he admitted there are signs the rise is slowing.

The fact that the R rate remains above one means that ‘the epidemic is still growing’, he said.

‘As long as R is above one the epidemic continues to grow and it will continue to grow at a reasonable rate – it’s doubling, perhaps, every 14 to 18 days – unless the R comes below one. 

‘But I do want to say, there are some areas where we’re beginning to see real effects of what’s happening. There are some indications [that] amongst young people the rates are coming down or flattening off a bit due to the huge efforts that people have made to try to adhere to these changes in behaviours that we need to have in order to get this down.

‘And in some areas of the country we can begin to see a little bit of flattening, possibly. So the measures are having an effect but we’re going to need to do more if the aim is to get R below one and to shrink this epidemic.’

Speaking in a TV briefing alongside Prime Minister Boris Johnson, Sir Patrick showed slides that estimated there are somewhere between 22,000 and 90,000 new infections every day in England.

The startling upper estimate comes from a statement prepared by SAGE sub-group SPI-M, which provides regular virus modelling for Sir Patrick and has members known to be in favour of a national circuit breaker lockdown. 

The King’s College Covid Symptom Study, which uses positive test results and reported symptoms from its app Covid Symptom Study, today estimated that there are 28,213 new cases of symptomatic coronavirus every day in England.

These form the majority of its estimated 36,251 for the whole of the UK, with a further 4,095 per day in Scotland, 2,366 in Wales and 1,577 in Northern Ireland.

The northern regions of England and the Midlands account for most of these cases, the report explained, with 7,831 per day in the North West, 7,058 a day in the North East, and 6,788 in the Midlands. The fewest were in the East of England, with 1,700 per day.

Professor Tim Spector, the epidemiologist who runs the study, said: ‘As we progress through this second wave of Covid-19, we are still seeing cases across the UK rise with an R value of 1.2, and the gap between the Northern regions of the UK and the South growing. 

‘Our data clearly shows that the number of cases is still being driven by the younger generations, which should mean less pressure on NHS admissions compared to earlier in the year.’ 

Today’s data releases come as local lockdown rules are tightening across the country, with Warrington in Merseyside the latest area to confirm it will move into Tier Three in the coming days. 

Local council bosses say they have agreed to a £5million support package for businesses that will be forced to close when the new measures come into force, expected to be next week.

EUROPE NOW RECORDING 200,000 CASES PER DAY 

 

Britain is not alone in its battle against a resurgence of Covid-19, with countries across Europe now facing crisis as the number of people testing positive each day on the continent has doubled in just 10 days to 200,000.

The continent first reported 100,000 cases in a day on October 12, although the true figures in the spring were likely far higher than the official peak of 38,000 on April 4. It has since hit 200,000 cases yesterday, Thursday.

Cases have continued to climb exponentially with France, Germany, Italy, Austria, the Czech Republic and others setting new 24-hour records in recent days after governments massively increased their testing capacity following the first wave.

Europe as a whole is reporting more cases per capita than the United States for the first time since America’s outbreak began to spiral out of control in March.

WHO figures say Europe is now accounting for nearly half of the world’s new cases, partly because of mass testing.

Europe accounts for about 10 per cent of the world population but nearly 19 per cent of global cases and 22 per cent of deaths since the start of the pandemic.

Discussions concluded this morning with restrictions including the closure of pubs set to come into force potentially by Thursday or Friday, according to local media reports.

Hospital capacity is running out in the area, which councillors said was the trigger point for moving into the ‘high alert’ level. As of today, there are 102 Covid-19 patients across Warrington and Halton Hospitals NHS Trust.

The Cheshire town, home to some 210,000 people, diagnosed 347 cases per 100,000 people in the week to October 18. Data shows 730 people tested positive, and health chiefs say cases are climbing in older age groups.

Nottinghamshire is also expected to face even tighter curbs to control outbreak after ‘successful’ talks between local leaders and the Government last night.

The city, as well as nearby Gedling, Broxtowe and Rushcliffe are expected to go into Tier 3 from next Wednesday, while Mansfield will be excluded.

Nottingham city has had one of the most consistently high infection rates in England – it is currently 610.1 cases per 100,000 people were diagnosed in the week to October 18, second only to Knowsley in Merseyside.

In Scotland, Nicola Sturgeon has warned that some parts of the country – or the whole nation – could be plunged back into a severe lockdown with all but essential shops and schools closed – as she demanded more money from Boris Johnson.

The First Minister today unveiled Scotland’s new five-tier approach to tackling the virus, the highest of which would see the shutters come down once again on the Scottish high street while trying to keep some other businesses going.

Outlining the new Level 0 – 4 system live on television she held out an olive branch to hospitality businesses who blasted the harsh new restrictions, which would place some level of bar to trading at all levels.

She said she would listen to arguments about trying to keep some pubs and restaurants open at higher tiers, but would not promise to make changes.

Ms Sturgeon warned ‘it is possible that the whole country could be placed in the same level’ and refused to rule out some parts of the country immediately being placed in Level 4.

Businesses in Scotland which face lockdown restrictions will be able to apply for grants on top of those provided by the UK Government’s job support scheme.

Red alert: This map shows how cases are spiralling across Europe, with higher infection rates shown in darker red. Spain this week became the first EU country to surpass a million confirmed infections, and France is set to follow after reaching 999,000 last night

Red alert: This map shows how cases are spiralling across Europe, with higher infection rates shown in darker red. Spain this week became the first EU country to surpass a million confirmed infections, and France is set to follow after reaching 999,000 last night 

Deaths in Europe as a whole are still lower than during the spring, although there are some countries in Eastern Europe that are seeing more deaths than ever before

Deaths in Europe as a whole are still lower than during the spring, although there are some countries in Eastern Europe that are seeing more deaths than ever before 

The Czech Republic and Belgium have the highest infection rates in Europe with cases rising across the continent in the second wave of the pandemic

The Czech Republic and Belgium have the highest infection rates in Europe with cases rising across the continent in the second wave of the pandemic 

SCOTLAND UNVEILS FIVE-TIER LOCKDOWN SYSTEM

In Scotland, Nicola Sturgeon warned that some parts of the country – or the whole nation – could be plunged back into a severe lockdown with all but essential shops and schools closed – as she demanded more money from Boris Johnson.

The First Minister today unveiled Scotland’s new five-tier approach to tackling the virus, the highest of which would see the shutters come down once again on the Scottish high street while trying to keep some other businesses going.

 

Outlining the new Level 0 – 4 system live on television she held out an olive branch to hospitality businesses who blasted the harsh new restrictions. 

She said she would listen to arguments about trying to keep some pubs and restaurants open at higher tiers, but would not promise to make changes.

Ms Sturgeon warned ‘it is possible that the whole country could be placed in the same level’ and refused to rule out some parts of the country immediately being placed in Level 4. 

Grants for £2,000 or £3,000 every four weeks would be available for firms forced to close due to lockdown measures. 

Those which can remain open but cannot trade as normal due to restrictions can apply for funding of £1,400 or £2,100 every four weeks, broadly in line with the scheme in England.

But Ms Sturgeon warned the money will run out and called for a ‘resolution’ from the UK Government.

In a swipe at Boris Johnson and Chancellor Rishi Sunak, she demanded the same measures for Scots firms as they unveiled in England yesterday.

‘The Chancellor’s commitment for England was open-ended. He will pay whatever the demand from business is for as long as necessary. I think that is right and proper,’ she said.

‘He is able to do that because he can borrow the money to pay for it. The Scottish government cannot do that so we have to rely on the Chancellor to provide the same funding guarantees to Scottish businesses as he already has for those in England. So far that hasn’t been done.

‘Not a single penny of extra funding beyond that already allocated has been guaranteed for Scotland as a result of yesterday’s announcement. 

‘So while I am not prepared to offer businesses here less funding than their counter parts in England get, I have to be clear on this point.

‘Without a resolution to the point I have just highlighted, the money that the Scottish government has to pay for this guarantee will eventually run out.

‘When exactly that will happen will of course depend on demand, but it will happen. It is not possible to fund indefinitely demand-led commitments out of a finite budget with no powers to borrow.’      

Another ONS report today confirmed that monthly deaths from Covid-19 rose in September for the first time since the first wave hit in April, but it is still only the 19th most common cause of death. 

Data show 725 people died with Covid-19 – although not necessarily because of it. In comparison, just 576 fatalities were recorded in August.  

WARRINGTON AND NOTTINGHAM FACE MOVES TO TIER THREE

Warrington in Merseyside the latest area to confirm it will move into Tier Three in the coming days. 

Local council bosses say they have agreed to a £5million support package for businesses that will be forced to close when the new measures come into force, expected to be next week.

Discussions concluded this morning with restrictions including the closure of pubs set to come into force potentially by Thursday or Friday, according to local media reports.

Hospital capacity is running out in the area, which councillors said was the trigger point for moving into the ‘high alert’ level. As of today, there are 102 Covid-19 patients across Warrington and Halton Hospitals NHS Trust.

The Cheshire town, home to some 210,000 people, diagnosed 347 cases per 100,000 people in the week to October 18. Data shows 730 people tested positive, and health chiefs say cases are climbing in older age groups.

Nottinghamshire is also expected to face even tighter curbs to control outbreak after ‘successful’ talks between local leaders and the Government last night.

The city, as well as nearby Gedling, Broxtowe and Rushcliffe are expected to go into Tier 3 from next Wednesday, while Mansfield will be excluded.

Nottingham city has had one of the most consistently high infection rates in England – it is currently 610.1 cases per 100,000 people were diagnosed in the week to October 18, second only to Knowsley in Merseyside.

This was the first time the number had increased since the first wave of disease slammed into the UK in April, when deaths in England and Wales soared from 1,700 to 31,000 in a month.

Since then, deaths had been more than halving every month but have now started to rise again. 

But the report reiterated that the number of victims is still ‘significantly below levels’ seen during the spring, when more than 1,000 Covid-19 fatalities were being recorded each day.

Despite coronavirus fatalities increasing, it still no longer ranks as one of the top causes of death. It was the 19th most common in England and 24th in Wales. 

Dementia was the top cause of death in both England and Wales, accounting for more than one in 10 fatalities, followed by heart disease and lung cancer.

The ONS report comes as official data from the Department of Health also shows deaths are rising again across the UK. The daily average has now risen to 151 after falling to a low of just seven in the summer. 

Top medical advisers have warned that deaths will continue to rise even if cases start falling because they have been ‘baked in’ among people who have already been infected. 

Data in the report also showed that 2,500 more people than usual died in September but, with fewer than 750 blamed on coronavirus, this meant that at least 1,700 were ‘excess’ deaths which are those thought to have been caused by the pandemic but not directly by Covid-19. 

A total of 39,827 people died in England in September, which was 2,568 more than usual for that month. In Wales there were 2,610 deaths – 135 more than average.

Coronavirus accounted for fewer than one in 50 of these, composing 1.7 per cent of deaths in England and 1.3 per cent in Wales. 

The 725 people who died with coronavirus in England and Wales in September were ones whose deaths ‘involved’ the disease, while a lower 596 people died ‘due to Covid-19’.

Those who had it when they died but it wasn’t deemed to be the main cause of death likely had another illness that coronavirus exacerbated – such as heart disease or cancer – or it may have been coincidental that they tested positive.

The ONS report said: ‘In September 2020, the number of deaths and mortality rate due to Covid-19 remained significantly below levels seen in March 2020 (the first month a Covid-19 death was registered in England and Wales). 

‘However, the mortality rate due to Covid-19 was higher in England in September 2020 compared with the previous month (August 2020). 

‘The mortality rate due to Covid-19 also increased in Wales, but this was not significant. This is the first increase in the mortality rate for deaths due to Covid-19 from one month to the next since April 2020.’  

PHE data shows the number of cases per 100,000 people in the worst hit regions appeared to turn and start falling in the week up to October 11 after at least five weeks of continuous increases

PHE data shows the number of cases per 100,000 people in the worst hit regions appeared to turn and start falling in the week up to October 11 after at least five weeks of continuous increases

PHE data also shows that cases appear to have started declining in under-30s, who were blamed for fuelling the fire of the UK's second wave of coronavirus

PHE data also shows that cases appear to have started declining in under-30s, who were blamed for fuelling the fire of the UK’s second wave of coronavirus

Public Health England data shows that coronavirus infection rates in the five worst-affected areas of England in the week to October 4 have since plummeted by an average 50 per cent, with positive tests declining despite none of the areas being in full local lockdown measures

Public Health England data shows that coronavirus infection rates in the five worst-affected areas of England in the week to October 4 have since plummeted by an average 50 per cent, with positive tests declining despite none of the areas being in full local lockdown measures

SEVEN NHS TRUSTS ARE NOW TREATING MORE COVID PATIENTS THAN THEY WERE IN APRIL

Seven NHS trusts in England are already treating more coronavirus patients than they were at the peak of the first wave, statistics show as the country braces for five months of misery through winter. 

But the silver lining is that, overall, total beds occupied by Covid-19 sufferers across the country are a third of what they were during the darkest days of the crisis in April. 

MailOnline’s analysis of official NHS figures reveals the number of coronavirus-hospitalised patients in Liverpool, Doncaster, Blackpool, Devon, Warrington, Barnsley and East Lancashire have surpassed levels in the spring. 

Doncaster and Bassetlaw Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust in Yorkshire has seen the most dramatic rise in Covid-19 hospitalisations compared to its first peak. Just 67 beds were occupied by infected patients on April 12 – England’s busiest day in the pandemic. This had more than doubled to 141 by October 20.   

But outbreaks of coronavirus infections in some of the worst-hit areas of the country – including Liverpool – are already starting to slow down, suggesting the influx of hospital additions will tail off in the coming weeks. It normally takes more than a fortnight to become seriously ill with Covid-19 and need hospital treatment. 

Britain is not alone in its battle against a resurgence of Covid-19, with countries across Europe now facing crisis as the number of people testing positive each day on the continent has doubled in just 10 days to 200,000.

The continent first reported 100,000 cases in a day on October 12, although the true figures in the spring were likely far higher than the official peak of 38,000 on April 4.

Cases have continued to climb exponentially with France, Germany, Italy, Austria, the Czech Republic and others setting new 24-hour records in recent days after governments massively increased their testing capacity following the first wave.

Europe as a whole is reporting more cases per capita than the United States for the first time since America’s outbreak began to spiral out of control in March.

WHO figures say Europe is now accounting for nearly half of the world’s new cases, partly because of mass testing.

Europe accounts for about 10 per cent of the world population but nearly 19 per cent of global cases and 22 per cent of deaths since the start of the pandemic.

Infections in Europe are also growing faster than in India and Brazil, which were the summer pace-setters along with the US but where cases are now falling.

Hospitals are coming under strain again in much of Europe, although in many places they are less badly hit than during the first wave.

Deaths in Western Europe are also lower than in the spring, but many countries in the eastern half of the continent are seeing record death tolls.

A WHO expert said on Monday that Europe and North America should follow the example of Asian countries by persevering with anti-Covid measures and quarantining anyone who comes into contact with infected people.

Spain this week became the first country in Western Europe to reach a million cases, while France is set to follow today after reaching 999,043 on Thursday.

France reported an all-time high of 41,622 new cases last night, a mark which few countries have ever surpassed. 

French PM Jean Castex announced an extension of curfew rules to more than two-thirds of the population on Thursday as cases continue to spiral out of control.

NORMAL CHRISTMAS IS ‘WISHFUL THINKING’, SAGE ADVISER WARNS

The idea that ‘we can carry on as we are’ and have a normal Christmas ‘is wishful thinking in the extreme’, a Government scientific adviser has said.

Professor John Edmunds, a member of the Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (Sage), said ‘radical action’ would be needed to stem the rise in coronavirus cases, particularly in regions with high incidence of the virus.

Professor John Edmunds, London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine

Professor John Edmunds, London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine

Prof Edmunds, who told MPs on Wednesday that tens of thousands of deaths could occur during this wave of the pandemic, said further measures are needed to bring cases down.

He told the PA news agency that a circuit-breaker is needed across the whole country or at least in areas where incidence is high.

‘The only way that we can have a relatively safe and normal Christmas is if we take radical action now to reduce incidence – at the very least in high incidence areas – and keep the incidence low across the country by implementing a package of measures to reduce social contacts,’ he said.

‘The notion that we can carry on as we are and have a Christmas that we can celebrate normally with friends and family is wishful thinking in the extreme.’

HOW BUSY IS YOUR HOSPITAL?
AREA COVID BEDS APRIL 12 TOTAL BEDS APRIL 12 % OCCUPIED AT PEAK COVID BEDS OCTOBER 20 RATE COMPARED TO PEAK?
ENGLAND 18,970 70,558 26.89% 6,055 31.92%
East of England 1,679 7,557 22.22% 288 17.15%
London 4,927 12,469 39.51% 610 12.38%
Midlands 3,430 14,996 22.87% 1,085 31.63%
North East and Yorkshire 2,541 9,986 25.45% 1,433 56.40%
North West 3,014 9,885 30.49% 2,097 69.58%
South East 2,342 9,559 24.50% 325 13.88%
South West 1,037 6,106 16.98% 217 20.93%
Essex Partnership University NHS Foundation Trust 34 445 7.64% 3 8.82%
Mid and South Essex NHS Foundation Trust 374 829 45.11% 80 21.39%
Bedfordshire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust 180 684 26.32% 33 18.33%
The Queen Elizabeth Hospital, King’s Lynn, NHS Foundation Trust 51 259 19.69% 14 27.45%
Milton Keynes University Hospital NHS Foundation Trust 66 177 37.29% 5 7.58%
East Suffolk and North Essex NHS Foundation Trust 123 828 14.86% 38 30.89%
Royal Papworth Hospital NHS Foundation Trust 49 155 31.61% 5 10.20%
North West Anglia NHS Foundation Trust 78 482 16.18% 23 29.49%
James Paget University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust 74 214 34.58% 12 16.22%
West Suffolk NHS Foundation Trust 36 201 17.91% 7 19.44%
Cambridge University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust 122 525 23.24% 9 7.38%
Norfolk and Norwich University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust 77 555 13.87% 9 11.69%
Norfolk and Suffolk NHS Foundation Trust 16 312 5.13% 1 6.25%
The Princess Alexandra Hospital NHS Trust 109 273 39.93% 6 5.50%
West Hertfordshire Hospitals NHS Trust 129 328 39.33% 26 20.16%
East and North Hertfordshire NHS Trust 65 388 16.75% 13 20.00%
Hertfordshire Partnership University NHS Foundation Trust 14 362 3.87% 0 0.00%
Norfolk Community Health and Care NHS Trust 16 178 8.99% 3 18.75%
Hertfordshire Community NHS Trust 16 86 18.60% 1 6.25%
Barts Health NHS Trust 559 1,196 46.74% 70 12.52%
London North West University Healthcare NHS Trust 357 771 46.30% 54 15.13%
Royal Free London NHS Foundation Trust 410 743 55.18% 27 6.59%
North Middlesex University Hospital NHS Trust 226 418 54.07% 49 21.68%
The Hillingdon Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust 102 277 36.82% 20 19.61%
North East London NHS Foundation Trust 49 281 17.44% 16 32.65%
Kingston Hospital NHS Foundation Trust 101 223 45.29% 8 7.92%
Barking, Havering and Redbridge University Hospitals NHS Trust 171 815 20.98% 100 58.48%
Guy’s and St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust 303 699 43.35% 18 5.94%
Lewisham and Greenwich NHS Trust 286 764 37.43% 23 8.04%
Croydon Health Services NHS Trust 153 352 43.47% 11 7.19%
St George’s University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust 219 469 46.70% 9 4.11%
King’s College Hospital NHS Foundation Trust 509 154 330.52% 43 8.45%
Whittington Health NHS Trust 83 184 45.11% 20 24.10%
West London NHS Trust 32 419 7.64% 6 18.75%
Oxleas NHS Foundation Trust 22 323 6.81% 0 0.00%
The Royal Marsden NHS Foundation Trust 10 116 8.62% 0 0.00%
Chelsea and Westminster Hospital NHS Foundation Trust 243 457 53.17% 28 11.52%
Homerton University Hospital NHS Foundation Trust 90 193 46.63% 7 7.78%
Barnet, Enfield and Haringey Mental Health NHS Trust 19 490 3.88% 0.00%
University College London Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust 160 367 43.60% 16 10.00%
Royal Brompton & Harefield NHS Foundation Trust 96 157 61.15% 10 10.42%
Central and North West London NHS Foundation Trust 37 603 6.14% 3 8.11%
Epsom and St Helier University Hospitals NHS Trust 148 468 31.62% 33 22.30%
East London NHS Foundation Trust 73 665 10.98% 13 17.81%
Hounslow and Richmond Community Healthcare NHS Trust 18 18 100.00% 0 0.00%
Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust 334 130 256.92% 19 5.69%
Central London Community Healthcare NHS Trust 44 161 27.33% 3 6.82%
Camden and Islington NHS Foundation Trust 20 136 14.71% 0 0.00%
Worcestershire Health and Care NHS Trust 37 224 16.52% 9 24.32%
Shropshire Community Health NHS Trust 16 65 24.62% 3 18.75%
Walsall Healthcare NHS Trust 180 367 49.05% 48 26.67%
Chesterfield Royal Hospital NHS Foundation Trust 65 270 24.07% 25 38.46%
Nottinghamshire Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust 18 354 5.08% 4 22.22%
South Warwickshire NHS Foundation Trust 75 313 23.96% 14 18.67%
University Hospitals of North Midlands NHS Trust 134 843 15.90% 95 70.90%
Sherwood Forest Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust 53 287 18.47% 35 66.04%
University Hospitals Coventry and Warwickshire NHS Trust 142 693 20.49% 23 16.20%
The Royal Wolverhampton NHS Trust 228 401 56.86% 35 15.35%
Wye Valley NHS Trust 31 171 18.13% 19 61.29%
George Eliot Hospital NHS Trust 69 216 31.94% 7 10.14%
North Staffordshire Combined Healthcare NHS Trust 11 109 10.09% 1 9.09%
The Dudley Group NHS Foundation Trust 122 467 26.12% 34 27.87%
Kettering General Hospital NHS Foundation Trust 69 421 16.39% 18 26.09%
Northampton General Hospital NHS Trust 104 489 21.27% 16 15.38%
Northamptonshire Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust 14 249 5.62% 0 0.00%
Midlands Partnership NHS Foundation Trust 28 345 8.12% 4 14.29%
University Hospitals Birmingham NHS Foundation Trust 694 1,731 40.09% 173 24.93%
Leicestershire Partnership NHS Trust 31 355 8.73% 1 3.23%
University Hospitals of Derby and Burton NHS Foundation Trust 225 794 28.34% 98 43.56%
United Lincolnshire Hospitals NHS Trust 72 435 16.55% 32 44.44%
University Hospitals of Leicester NHS Trust 195 931 20.95% 58 29.74%
Worcestershire Acute Hospitals NHS Trust 128 518 24.71% 24 18.75%
Nottingham University Hospitals NHS Trust 210 839 25.03% 194 92.38%
Sandwell and West Birmingham Hospitals NHS Trust 214 488 43.85% 51 23.83%
Birmingham and Solihull Mental Health NHS Foundation Trust 16 595 2.69% 9 56.25%
Shrewsbury and Telford Hospital NHS Trust 77 312 24.68% 27 35.06%
Lincolnshire Community Health Services NHS Trust 16 112 14.29% 0 0.00%
Derbyshire Community Health Services NHS Foundation Trust 13 88 14.77% 1 7.69%
Coventry and Warwickshire Partnership NHS Trust 19 249 7.63% 8 42.11%
Birmingham Community Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust 53 257 20.62% 18 33.96%
Black Country Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust 16 212 7.55% 0 0.00%
South Tyneside and Sunderland NHS Foundation Trust 200 519 38.54% 108 54.00%
Bradford Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust 88 356 24.72% 88 100.00%
York Teaching Hospital NHS Foundation Trust 108 351 30.77% 31 28.70%
Harrogate and District NHS Foundation Trust 34 130 26.15% 13 38.24%
Airedale NHS Foundation Trust 58 172 33.72% 22 37.93%
Barnsley Hospital NHS Foundation Trust 63 263 23.95% 68 107.94%
The Rotherham NHS Foundation Trust 70 10 700.00% 58 82.86%
Sheffield Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust 261 977 26.71% 147 56.32%
Northern Lincolnshire and Goole NHS Foundation Trust 70 24 291.67% 41 58.57%
North Cumbria Integrated Care NHS Foundation Trust 152 350 43.43% 26 17.11%
Doncaster and Bassetlaw Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust 67 415 16.14% 141 210.45%
Gateshead Health NHS Foundation Trust 114 282 40.43% 70 61.40%
Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust 230 76 302.63% 143 62.17%
The Newcastle Upon Tyne Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust 141 641 22.00% 58 41.13%
Northumbria Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust 134 462 29.00% 54 40.30%
South Tees Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust 145 173 83.82% 50 34.48%
North Tees and Hartlepool NHS Foundation Trust 73 234 31.20% 68 93.15%
Hull University Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust 44 554 7.94% 22 50.00%
Calderdale and Huddersfield NHS Foundation Trust 93 308 30.19% 50 53.76%
Cumbria, Northumberland, Tyne and Wear NHS Foundation Trust 43 634 6.78% 9 20.93%
Mid Yorkshire Hospitals NHS Trust 165 484 34.09% 91 55.15%
County Durham and Darlington NHS Foundation Trust 129 468 27.56% 52 40.31%
Bradford District Care NHS Foundation Trust 12 153 7.84% 0 0.00%
Manchester University NHS Foundation Trust 414 471 87.90% 157 37.92%
Wirral University Teaching Hospital NHS Foundation Trust 128 397 32.24% 87 67.97%
St Helens and Knowsley Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust 153 454 33.70% 126 82.35%
Liverpool Heart and Chest Hospital NHS Foundation Trust 22 53 41.51% 7 31.82%
Alder Hey Children’s NHS Foundation Trust 11 90 12.22% 3 27.27%
Mid Cheshire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust 85 309 27.51% 22 25.88%
Liverpool University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust 346 969 35.71% 396 114.45%
The Walton Centre NHS Foundation Trust 29 84 34.52% 1 3.45%
East Cheshire NHS Trust 57 190 30.00% 15 26.32%
Countess of Chester Hospital NHS Foundation Trust 120 307 39.09% 26 21.67%
Salford Royal NHS Foundation Trust 136 101 134.65% 73 53.68%
Bolton NHS Foundation Trust 141 344 40.99% 54 38.30%
Tameside and Glossop Integrated Care NHS Foundation Trust 74 242 30.58% 47 63.51%
Wrightington, Wigan and Leigh NHS Foundation Trust 93 258 36.05% 91 97.85%
Pennine Care NHS Foundation Trust 31 416 7.45% 4 12.90%
North West Boroughs Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust 25 190 13.16% 5 20.00%
University Hospitals of Morecambe Bay NHS Foundation Trust 130 332 39.16% 92 70.77%
Southport and Ormskirk Hospital NHS Trust 104 336 30.95% 71 68.27%
Lancashire & South Cumbria NHS Foundation Trust 19 310 6.13% 7 36.84%
Pennine Acute Hospitals NHS Trust 259 207 125.12% 183 70.66%
Stockport NHS Foundation Trust 117 374 31.28% 69 58.97%
Warrington and Halton Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust 98 301 32.56% 117 119.39%
Cheshire and Wirral Partnership NHS Foundation Trust 11 218 5.05% 0 0.00%
Blackpool Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust 117 438 26.71% 173 147.86%
Lancashire Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust 132 447 29.53% 110 83.33%
East Lancashire Hospitals NHS Trust 122 482 25.31% 130 106.56%
Greater Manchester Mental Health NHS Foundation Trust 18 796 2.26% 9 50.00%
Isle of Wight NHS Trust 19 20 95.00% 2 10.53%
Royal Surrey County Hospital NHS Foundation Trust 63 207 30.43% 18 28.57%
Sussex Community NHS Foundation Trust 47 250 18.80% 0 0.00%
Frimley Health NHS Foundation Trust 276 696 39.66% 62 22.46%
University Hospital Southampton NHS Foundation Trust 166 718 23.12% 25 15.06%
Portsmouth Hospitals NHS Trust 130 614 21.17% 17 13.08%
Royal Berkshire NHS Foundation Trust 142 491 28.92% 31 21.83%
Hampshire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust 139 418 33.25% 35 25.18%
Dartford and Gravesham NHS Trust 79 289 27.34% 12 15.19%
Oxford Health NHS Foundation Trust 55 400 13.75% 0 0.00%
Medway NHS Foundation Trust 106 316 33.54% 25 23.58%
Oxford University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust 125 578 21.63% 16 12.80%
Ashford and St Peter’s Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust 114 285 40.00% 30 26.32%
Surrey and Sussex Healthcare NHS Trust 128 351 36.47% 6 4.69%
East Kent Hospitals University NHS Foundation Trust 143 508 28.15% 8 5.59%
Southern Health NHS Foundation Trust 49 457 10.72% 3 6.12%
Maidstone and Tunbridge Wells NHS Trust 85 191 44.50% 2 2.35%
Berkshire Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust 48 196 24.49% 3 6.25%
Sussex Partnership NHS Foundation Trust 13 8 162.50% 0 0.00%
East Sussex Healthcare NHS Trust 68 350 19.43% 7 10.29%
Brighton and Sussex University Hospitals NHS Trust 107 525 20.38% 15 14.02%
Buckinghamshire Healthcare NHS Trust 86 316 27.22% 4 4.65%
Kent and Medway NHS and Social Care Partnership Trust 12 353 3.40% 0 0.00%
Western Sussex Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust 77 501 15.37% 4 5.19%
Kent Community Health NHS Foundation Trust 38 303 12.54% 0 0.00%
Yeovil District Hospital NHS Foundation Trust 14 148 9.46% 1 7.14%
University Hospitals Bristol and Weston NHS Foundation Trust 81 361 22.44% 15 18.52%
Torbay and South Devon NHS Foundation Trust 23 195 11.79% 30 130.43%
Dorset County Hospital NHS Foundation Trust 17 191 8.90% 4 23.53%
Northern Devon Healthcare NHS Trust 15 143 10.49% 7 46.67%
Royal United Hospitals Bath NHS Foundation Trust 43 257 16.73% 6 13.95%
Dorset Healthcare University NHS Foundation Trust 29 277 10.47% 5 17.24%
Royal Cornwall Hospitals NHS Trust 32 233 13.73% 3 9.38%
Somerset NHS Foundation Trust 32 444 7.21% 6 18.75%
Royal Devon and Exeter NHS Foundation Trust 54 330 16.36% 14 25.93%
Cornwall Partnership NHS Foundation Trust 50 252 19.84% 1 2.00%
University Hospitals Plymouth NHS Trust 89 404 22.03% 22 24.72%
Great Western Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust 64 273 23.44% 16 25.00%
Salisbury NHS Foundation Trust 38 184 20.65% 2 5.26%
University Hospitals Dorset NHS Foundation Trust 76 476 15.97% 35 46.05%
Gloucestershire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust 148 262 56.49% 15 10.14%
Gloucestershire Health and Care NHS Foundation Trust 78 230 33.91% 0 0.00%
North Bristol NHS Trust 107 620 17.26% 33 30.84%
Avon and Wiltshire Mental Health Partnership NHS Trust 19 346 5.49% 2 10.53%

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