Graphs show surge in cases among men in their twenties... and spike coincides ...

Graphs show surge in cases among men in their twenties... and spike coincides ...
Graphs show surge in cases among men in their twenties... and spike coincides ...

Coronavirus cases have spiralled quicker among men in their 20s compared to women, official figures revealed today in another sign that Euro 2020 has helped fuel the third wave. 

Public Health England data showed 10,267 more young men than women were infected over the last two weeks, with the gender gap having widened since the tournament kicked off.  

Cases have remained roughly the same between men and women throughout the pandemic. But they began to diverge after June 13, when England beat Croatia 1-0 in their first match. 

Some scientists have already blamed the football tournament for driving a ferocious surge in cases, after people crowded together in pubs and homes to watch the matches and tens of thousands of fans packed inside Wembley for England's six home games in London

Experts have also speculated England's cases could start to fall after the national team's dramatic defeat to Italy on penalties in the final last Sunday. Scotland saw its outbreak start to fall when it crashed out of the competition early. 

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PHE's weekly surveillance report also revealed cases are now at their highest levels since the pandemic began among teenagers, who are likely to have only had one dose of the vaccine. Rates were highest in the North East and Yorkshire, which have become the biggest hotspots for the Indian variant since the third wave took off.  

Separate data from Test and Trace showed infections surged 43 per cent last week after another 194,005 people tested positive for the virus. And Britain today recorded another 48,553 Covid cases in the biggest daily surge since January. There were also another 63 deaths, the most since March.

Despite the daily metrics pointing towards a growing epidemic, one surveillance study today suggested the third wave may have already peaked. King's College London scientists behind the symptom study estimated 33,118 people were catching the virus daily in the week ending July 10, compared to 33,723 in the previous seven-day spell.

Professor Tim Spector, who leads the study, said infections may now be beginning to 'plateau' but the rate of decline was slower than during the second wave.

The study also found almost half of all cases are now among people who have received at least one dose of the Covid vaccine, which Professor Spector said may have happened because the virus was 'running out' of un-vaccinated people without previous immunity to infect.

This does not mean the jabs do not work. Scientists have always been honest that they are not perfect and millions will still be vulnerable to infection even after getting both doses.

It comes after a study last night suggested elderly Brits given AstraZeneca's vaccine are less likely to have Covid antibodies than those who had Pfizer's. Rigorous trials also showed the British-made jab was slightly weaker.

In other Covid news: 

A record half-a-million Britons were sentenced to 'pingdemic' lockdown last week, figures revealed, amid concerns NHS Covid contact-tracing app could force millions off work;  A scathing letter which demanded Freedom Day be delayed and was backed by more than 1,200 'experts' allowed people with no scientific credentials to sign it, MailOnline revealed; Britons were forced to cancel holiday plans in droves as Ibiza, Majorca and Menorca are set to be scrubbed from the 'green list'; Face mask shambles continued as police were told they must keep wearing them while on the beat; Study revealed people given AstraZeneca's Covid jab were less likely to develop antibodies than those who received Pfizer's; Vaccines Tsar Kate Bingham was revealed as one of 40,000 double-jabbed Britons forced to put holiday plans on hold after taking part in Novavax trial that is still not recognised by NHS or EU; Pub in Norwich becomes the first in the country to ban punters who can't prove they've been jabbed.

Public Health England data showed 10,267 more young men than women were infected over the last two weeks, with the gender gap having widened since the tournament kicked off

Public Health England data showed 10,267 more young men than women were infected over the last two weeks, with the gender gap having widened since the tournament kicked off

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PHE's weekly update also revealed that every local authority in England saw a rise in Covid infections last week except three, as the third wave of infections continues to surge. The three areas where infections dropped were Blackburn with Darwen, where there is a suggestion the outbreak may have already peaked after it was hit hard by the Indian variant, Wokingham and Salford

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More than nine in ten areas across England saw their Covid infections rise last week. But in many places this surge was slower than during the previous seven-day period

Spiralling Covid cases come after fans clumped together to watch the Euros at Wembley Stadium (above) where they were pictured without masks and with scant regard for social distancing, and in pubs and homes across the country

Spiralling Covid cases come after fans clumped together to watch the Euros at Wembley Stadium (above) where they were pictured without masks and with scant regard for social distancing, and in pubs and homes across the country 

Two regions of England are recording their highest rate of new Covid-19 cases since comparable figures began in summer 2020, when mass testing was first introduced across the UK.

The North East recorded 835.8 cases per 100,000 people in the week to July 11, while Yorkshire and the Humber recorded 462.7 per 100,000, according to the latest Covid-19 surveillance report from PHE.

All other regions are recording their highest rate since January. Case rates are also rising for all age groups, with 20 to 29-year-olds recording the highest rate of 747.3 cases per 100,000 people.

It is the highest rate for this age group since the week to January 10. Both five to nine-year-olds (297.3 cases per 100,000) and 10 to 19-year-olds (729.1) are recording their highest rates since comparable figures began. 

Surveillance data shows almost half of cases are now being spotted among Britons who have received at least one dose of the vaccine (orange line), while they are dropping among the un-vaccinated (blue line). Professor Spector suggested this may be the case because the virus is 'running out' of un-vaccinated people to infect

Surveillance data shows almost half of cases are now being spotted among Britons who have received at least one dose of the vaccine (orange line), while they are dropping among the un-vaccinated (blue line). Professor Spector suggested this may be the case because the virus is 'running out' of un-vaccinated people to infect

This graph shows the percentage of Covid swabs that detected the virus among Britons depending on whether they were un-vaccinated (red line), had one dose (blue line) or two doses (orange line). Almost half of all Britons who had Covid had been vaccinated in the week to July 10 (week 27 on the graph). Cases in un-vaccinated Britons did not appear to be falling here because the graph considers the percentage of people tested who had the virus

This graph shows the percentage of Covid swabs that detected the virus among Britons depending on whether they were un-vaccinated (red line), had one dose (blue line) or two doses (orange line). Almost half of all Britons who had Covid had been vaccinated in the week to July 10 (week 27 on the graph). Cases in un-vaccinated Britons did not appear to be falling here because the graph considers the percentage of people tested who had the virus

People given AstraZeneca's Covid jab 'are LESS likely to develop antibodies'

Elderly Britons given AstraZeneca's vaccine are less likely to have Covid antibodies than those who had Pfizer's, a study has suggested. 

Imperial College London researchers found fewer than 85 per cent of over-80s had detectable levels of the virus-fighting proteins two weeks after their second AZ jab. 

By contrast, the proportion of over-80s with antibodies after getting the second Pfizer vaccine was almost 98 per cent.

The findings came from Britain's largest surveillance study, known as REACT-2, which randomly tests blood samples from hundreds of thousands of Britons.

Although antibodies are just one part of the overall immune response to Covid, experts said the study results were not totally surprising. 

Professor Ian Jones, a virologist at Reading University, told MailOnline the British jab was less likely to spark immunity because it relied on a weakened cold virus. 

In some cases the body may attack this virus instead of the Covid proteins on its surface, which results in the jab failing to spark Covid immunity, he said. But Pfizer's jab does not have this problem because it uses a completely different technology. 

In trials of the jabs, AstraZeneca's vaccine was also found to be slightly weaker at preventing symptomatic Covid infection. 

But real-world analysis of Britain's vaccine rollout has shown that both vaccines are extremely effective at stopping severe illness and death.

Even against the Indian variant, they were both shown to reduce the risk of being hospitalised with the virus by more than 90 per cent. 

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The figures reflect the impact of the third wave of coronavirus, which is continuing to drive a sharp increase in cases along with a slow but steady rise in hospitalisations.

Responding to the figures, Dr Yvonne Doyle, medical director at Public Health England, warned that despite more Covid-19 restrictions easing in England on Monday July 19, the virus had not gone away.

'Case and hospitalisation rates continue to rise,' she said. 'We must all be sensible. Remember it is safer to be outside when mixing with friends and family and when inside, open windows to help ventilation.

'The best way to protect yourself is to have both doses of the vaccine as soon as you are offered. Do not delay.

'We should all continue to get tested twice a week and anyone who has symptoms should seek a test immediately and stay at home while they await their result.'

Covid-19 hospital admissions in England stood at 4.4 per 100,000 people in the week to July 11, the highest rate since the week to March 14.

Admission rates are highest in north-west England, with a rate of 10.5 per 100,000 – the highest since the week to February 21.

Among age groups, admission rates are highest for those aged 85 and over (14.2), followed by 75 to 79-year-olds (8.1).

However, scientists have raised concerns the separate Covid symptom study — which relies on daily reports from more than a million Britons — is no longer a 'reliable enough guide'.

No other survey has yet to point to a downturn in cases for Britain as a whole, although official Department of Health statistics do back up the claims that Scotland's outbreak is shrinking. 

A breakdown of the latest ZOE/King's figures revealed cases were up by two fifths among those who have received at least one dose, but down by a fifth in people who have not got the vaccine.

As many as 15,537 infections are occurring every day among people who have got at least one jab, the app suggested.

This was up 40 per cent from 11,084 daily infections a fortnight ago.

Among Britons who had not been jabbed there were estimated to be 17,581 daily infections, a fall of 20 per cent on the previous period.

Professor Spector said: 'In the UK, new cases in vaccinated people are still going up and soon will outpace un-vaccinated cases.

'This is probably because we're running out of un-vaccinated susceptible people to infect as more and more people get the vaccine.

'While the figures look worrying, it is important to highlight that vaccines have massively reduced severe infections and post-vaccination Covid is a much milder disease for most people.

'The main concern is now the risk of long Covid.'

More than 46million Britons — or 87.4 per cent of adults — have got at least one dose of the Covid vaccine. And 35.1million — or 66.7 per cent — have received both doses.

Ministers trumpeted the drive yesterday for being ahead of schedule, after two thirds of Britons received both doses of the vaccine five days before tNo10's target of 'Freedom Day' on July 19.

The latest King's/ZOE data also estimated cases have dropped by one per cent across the country.

It marks the first fall since May 22 at the end of the second wave, when they dipped by seven per cent to 2,550 new infections a day.

Scotland was a key driver of this week's fall, with daily infections projected to have nearly halved from 4,780 to 2,760.

It comes just three weeks after their national team crashed out of the Euro 2020 tournament, which has been repeatedly linked to surging infections.

Test and Trace data published today showed cases surged by 43 per cent last week. They said there were 194,000 positive tests in the week to July 7, the highest since late January when the second wave was starting to run out of steam

Test and Trace data published today showed cases surged by 43 per cent last week. They said there were 194,000 positive tests in the week to July 7, the highest since late January when the second wave was starting to run out of steam

NHS England data showed a record 520,000 alerts were sent by the app last week, telling people they had been in close contact with someone who tested positive

NHS England data showed a record 520,000 alerts were sent by the app last week, telling people they had been in close contact with someone who tested positive

Up to 10 per cent of staff working at Nissan's car plant in Sunderland (pictured) have been told to self-isolate by the app

Up to 10 per cent of staff working at Nissan's car plant in Sunderland (pictured) have been told to self-isolate by the app

Deaths directly caused by alcohol reached record levels last year after Covid lockdowns drove binge drinking at home, a study by Public Health England has suggested. Graph shows: The number of alcohol-specific deaths per 100,000 in England each month in 2021, 2020 and the baseline average taken from 2018 and 2019

Deaths directly caused by alcohol reached record levels last year after Covid lockdowns drove binge drinking at home, a study by Public Health England has suggested. Graph shows: The number of alcohol-specific deaths per 100,000 in England each month in 2021, 2020 and the baseline average taken from 2018 and 2019

Despite pubs, clubs and restaurants during the national lockdowns, the total amount of alcohol released for sale during the pandemic was still similar to the pre-pandemic years, suggesting people were drinking more at home, PHE said

Despite pubs, clubs and restaurants during the national lockdowns, the total amount of alcohol released for sale during the pandemic was still similar to the pre-pandemic years, suggesting people were drinking more at home, PHE said

People given AstraZeneca's Covid jab are less likely to develop antibodies than those who receive Pfizer's 

Elderly Britons given AstraZeneca's vaccine are less likely to have Covid antibodies than those who had Pfizer's, a study has suggested. 

Imperial College London researchers found fewer than 85 per cent of over-80s had detectable levels of the virus-fighting proteins two weeks after their second AZ jab. 

By contrast, the proportion of over-80s with antibodies after getting the second Pfizer vaccine was almost 98 per cent.

The findings came from Britain's largest surveillance study, known as REACT-2, which randomly tests blood samples from hundreds of thousands of Britons.

Although antibodies are just one part of the overall immune response to Covid, experts said the study results were not totally surprising. 

Professor Ian Jones, a virologist at Reading University, told MailOnline the British jab was less likely to spark immunity because it relied on a weakened cold virus. 

In some cases the body may attack this virus instead of the Covid proteins on its

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