UK Covid cases jump more than 30% in a week, data suggests

London, UK Updated: Jul 01, 2022, 11:44 PM(IST)

Representative image Photograph:( Reuters )

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The latest jump in Covid cases comes after an earlier increase of about 40% last month, following the large street parties, concerts and festivities held to mark the platinum jubilee celebrations marking 70 years of Queen Elizabeth II's reign.

According to the data released by Britain's Office for National Statistics, the number of new coronavirus cases across Britain has surged by more than 30% in the last week, with cases largely driven by the super infectious omicron variants. Data showed that more than 3 million people in the U.K. had Covid last week, although there has not been an equivalent spike in hospitalizations. The number of COVID-19 deaths also fell slightly in the last week.

“COVID-19 has not gone away,” said Dr Mary Ramsay, of the Health Security Agency, as reported by AP. “It is also sensible to wear a face-covering in crowded, enclosed spaces,” she said. Britain dropped nearly all its coronavirus measures, including mask-wearing and social distancing months ago and masks are rarely seen on public transport.

The latest jump in Covid cases comes after an earlier increase of about 40% last month, following the large street parties, concerts and festivities held to mark the platinum jubilee celebrations marking 70 years of Queen Elizabeth II's reign.

“The constant bombardment of waves we are seeing does cause a clinical impact that is not to be underestimated,” said Dr Stephen Griffin, an associate professor of medicine at the University of Leeds, explaining that any infection can lead to long Covid.

Despite widespread immunization across Britain, the protection from vaccines is likely fading and omicron and its subvariants have evolved to become more infectious. Britain's Health Security Agency said they were seeing more outbreaks in care homes for older people and a rise in admissions to intensive care units of people over 65.

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As reported by AP, Dr Jonathan Van-Tam, a former deputy chief medical officer for the U.K., told the BBC that Covid is now “much, much, much closer to seasonal flu” than when it first emerged. Still, he said experts should be vigilant for any signs the virus was causing more severe illness.

Globally, the World Health Organization said this week that Covid is increasing in more than 100 countries worldwide. The United Nations health agency warned that relaxed testing and surveillance measures mean it may be more difficult to catch emerging variants before they spread more widely.

(with inputs from agencies)

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