United Kingdom

Covid cases drop by a third in two weeks, but deaths will be slow to follow

Positive coronavirus cases are reducing (Picture: Getty)

The number of positive coronavirus cases has dropped by a third in two weeks.

Boris Johnson announced the figures at a press conference this evening, warning that it would take some time before deaths also began to drop.

He also said: ‘I am sorry to have to tell you that today the number of deaths recorded from Covid in the UK has surpassed 100,000.

‘It’s hard to compute the sorrow contained in that grim statistic. The years of life lost and the family gatherings not attending, and for so many relatives even, the missed chance to say goodbye.

‘I offer my deep condolences to everyone who has lost a loved one. Fathers and mothers, brothers and sisters, sons and daughters, and the many grandparents who have been taken.’

 Explaining a slide showing case numbers, Chief Medical Officer Chris Whitty said: ‘As you can see on this graph the number peaked at an extremely high number. It is still at a very high number but it has been coming down.

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A slide depicting coronavirus cases which was shown in a press conference today

‘I want to just put one caution on that. ONS data demonstrates a rather slower decrease and I think we have to be careful that we do not relax too quickly.’

He added: ‘The number of people in hospital with Covid is still an incredibly high number, over 35,000 people.’

Although the number is flattening out, it is still ‘substantially’ more than at the previous peak in April.

‘And over this time it looks as if it is coming down slightly in some areas including London and the south east and east of England, but there is some areas of the country where it is not convincingly reducing. It is still at a very high level throughout the county and NHS staff are working incredibly hard with very sick Covid patients.

‘Finally, on this day, the number of deaths at the moment… this looks as if this has flattened out, but is still at a very high level. The most recent seven day average for deaths is 1,242 deaths, an incredibly high number and I think we have to be realistic, that the rate of mortality will come down relatively slowly over the next two weeks and will probably remain flat for a while now.

‘So we will still unfortunately be having additional deaths to add to that very sad total that the prime minister spoke about.’

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