England's Covid R rate may now be 1.5 - the highest since October

England's Covid R rate may now be 1.5 - the highest since October
England's Covid R rate may now be 1.5 - the highest since October

England's Covid R rate may now be as high as 1.5 — the highest it has been since the second wave spiralled out of control in October, Government scientists have announced. 

SAGE estimates the R rate in England is between 1.2 and 1.5, growing three to seven per cent every day.

It came as official data today showed around one in 160 people had Covid with the outbreak growing nearly 60 per cent in England last week.

The R rate is highest in the South East, South West and North East and Yorkshire, all of which have rates as high as 1.6 according to estimates.

It is now lowest in the North West — despite spiralling cases in the region — which has an estimated rate of between 1.1 and 1.2. 

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And office for National Statistics (ONS) data shows around 330,000 were infected with coronavirus on any given day last week. 

Cases increased in all age groups and in all regions, statisticians said, as the Delta variant continues to cause a surge in infections across the country. 

The figures come despite some signs the third wave across the UK may already be slowing. Department of Health bosses posted 32,551 new infections yesterday, up 16.3 per cent on last Thursday. 

But it was the sixth day in a row the rise in the seven-day average for cases — 34.92 per cent — fell, down from 42.81 per cent on Wednesday.

And experts today said the outbreak in England may begin to shrink once people stop meeting up in large crowds as regularly when Euro 2020 is finished.

Professor Paul Hunter, an infectious disease specialist at the University of East Anglia, said the country is likely to see a slow down in the surge in cases once the tournament is over — as was the case in Scotland after they were knocked out.

Office for National Statistics (ONS) data shows around 330,000 were infected with coronavirus on any given day last week

Office for National Statistics (ONS) data shows around 330,000 were infected with coronavirus on any given day last week

Northeast and northwest England had the highest proportion of people of any region likely to test positive for coronavirus in the week to July 3 —around one in 80

Northeast and northwest England had the highest proportion of people of any region likely to test positive for coronavirus in the week to July 3 —around one in 80

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