COVID-19: ‘Big falls’ in infection rates across London and South East – but new cases remain high in some areas | UK News

COVID-19: ‘Big falls’ in infection rates across London and South East – but new cases remain high in some areas | UK News

COVID-19 cases in England fell by about 60% from February to March – but the most recent information means that this decline is now “levelling off”.

The newest REACT examine suggests infection rates at the moment are at a stage final seen in early September – and are practically the identical as the tip of the primary lockdown final May.

COVID-19 infection rates fell in all age teams and areas across February and March, researchers mentioned.

London and the South East noticed the sharpest drops in infection rates from February to March, but specialists have warned there stays “persistent areas of upper prevalence” in southern Yorkshire and elements of the Midlands and the North West.

Across England, information exhibits a median of only one in 500 folks was carrying the virus in March – and the examine additionally indicated that the vaccine rollout might be “breaking the hyperlink” between infections, deaths and hospital admissions.

Those aged 65 and over, who have been prioritised for the vaccine, had the bottom prevalence of infections, deaths and hospital admissions, the examine’s tenth spherical from 11 to 30 March discovered.

The relationships between cases and deaths “has diverged from January onwards and is in maintaining with the timing of the rollout of the mass vaccination programme”, the examine’s authors mentioned.

Children aged 5 to 12 had the very best prevalence in cases in March, which coincided with faculties returning on 8 March and twice-weekly testing of pupils going down.

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Schoolchildren now have the very best prevalence of cases

Professor Paul Elliott, director of the REACT programme from Imperial’s School of Public Health, mentioned: “We have seen a gratifying fall in infections since our final survey in February, with infections dropping by round 60% total.

“This is massively encouraging and exhibits we’re headed in the best route.

“However, in our most up-to-date information there was a flattening off in the infection fee with an R quantity now round one.

“This exhibits that we have to proceed to strategy the scenario with warning and preserve sticking to the foundations.”

More than 140,000 volunteers aged 5 and over from round England have been examined with PCR exams in the tenth examine, with greater than 1.5 million folks offering swabs since April 2020.

The examine discovered, as with earlier rounds, that individuals dwelling in probably the most disadvantaged neighbourhoods had larger infection rates than in wealthier areas.

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