The FINANCIAL — An estimated 1 in 55 people tested positive for the coronavirus (COVID-19) within the community population in England, during the week ending 16 January 2021, equating to 1,023,700 people, or 1.88% of the population.
This is a decrease from the week ending 2 January 2021 when 1,122,000 people (2.06%) were estimated to have COVID-19.
The percentage of people testing positive in Wales levelled off. An estimated 44,000 people, around 1 in 70 or 1.45% of the population, had the virus during the week ending 16 January 2021.
In Northern Ireland the percentage of people testing positive has increased over the previous two weeks. An estimated 29,400 people had COVID-19 in the week ending 16 January 2021, equating to 1 in 60 people or 1.60% of the population.
In Scotland, the percentage of people testing positive levelled off in the week ending 16 January 2021 at around 1 in 100 people, equating to an estimated 52,200 people or 0.99% of the population.
As there was no publication of the infection survey on 15 January 2021, there are no official estimates for the week ending 9 January 2021.
In England, the percentage of people with new variant compatible positives has decreased in London, the South East and East of England in the week ending 16 January 2021, while in other regions increases have generally levelled off.
In the week ending 16 January 2021, the percentage of people testing positive and compatible with the new variant decreased in London, the South East and East of England
Modelled percentage of cases that are compatible with the new variant (ORF1ab- and N-gene positive) and other variants based on nose and throat swabs, daily, by region since 6 December 2020, England
Percentage of deaths involving COVID-19 rises to highest of the pandemic
There were 7,245 deaths involving the coronavirus (COVID-19) in England and Wales in the week ending 15 January 2021 – an increase of 1,188 compared with the previous week.
Deaths involving COVID-19 accounted for 40.2% of the 18,042 deaths registered in the week ending 15 January, the highest proportion since the start of the pandemic.
The number of COVID-19 deaths increased in eight out of nine English regions, with only Yorkshire and the Humber seeing a fall compared with the previous week. Wales also reported a rise for the sixth consecutive week.
In total, there have been 94,971 deaths involving COVID-19 registered in England and Wales since the start of the pandemic (up to 15 January 2021). Around 75% of these have occurred among people aged 75 years and over.
People testing positive for new UK variant of COVID-19 are more likely to report symptoms
People testing positive for the new UK variant of the coronavirus (COVID-19) have been more likely to report some symptoms than those whose tests were not compatible with the new variant, but were less likely to report loss of taste or smell. There was no evidence of difference in the percentages reporting gastrointestinal symptoms.
The coronavirus (COVID-19) was the leading cause of death in December 2020 in both England and in Wales.
Of the 52,676 deaths registered in December 2020 in England, 20.8% (10,973 deaths) were due to COVID-19. This means the coronavirus was identified as the underlying cause of death. This is the highest proportion seen in England since May 2020 (when 23.1% of all deaths were due to COVID-19).
In Wales, 27.4% of the 3,941 deaths registered in December 2020 were due to COVID-19 (1,081 deaths), the highest proportion since April 2020 (when 30.1% of all deaths were due to COVID-19).
Highest rates of death in men who work in elementary occupations
Men working in elementary occupation groups, such as security or caring, leisure and other service occupations, had the highest rates of death involving COVID-19.
Analysis of coronavirus-related deaths by occupation in England and Wales, registered between 9 March and 28 December 2020, show they experienced 66.3 and 64.1 deaths per 100,000 males, respectively.
Four other major occupation groups had statistically significantly higher rates of death in men involving COVID-19 when compared to the rate of COVID-19 among men of the same age in the population.
These were process, plant and machine operatives (52.8 deaths per 100,000 males); skilled trades occupations (40.4 deaths per 100,000 males; sales and customer service occupations (40.3 deaths per 100,000 males), and administrative and secretarial occupations (39.0 deaths per 100,000 males).
The analysis concerns those of working age between 20 and 64 years, and deaths involving COVID-19 includes those where COVID-19 was the underlying cause of death or a factor that contributed to the death.
Men working in elementary occupations or caring, leisure and other service occupations had the highest rates of death involving COVID-19
Age-standardised mortality rates of death involving the coronavirus (COVID-19) in England and Wales, by major occupational group, deaths registered between 9 March and 28 December 2020
COVID-19 cases and hospital admissions fell in London, South East and East of England, but remained high
Hospital admissions and COVID-19 infections remained high, but fell in London, the South East and East of England in the week ending 17 January. Cases compatible with the new COVID-19 variant also decreased in these regions, which had seen high levels in recent weeks.
Despite these decreases in the latest week, London still has the highest positivity rate among English regions at 2.89%, and the second highest hospital admission rate at 44.5 per 100,000 people.
The North East recorded the second highest positivity rate, and saw the largest increase in hospital admissions, rising to 36.3 admissions per 100,000 people from 25.8 in the week ending 10 January.