Covid infection rate in England climbs to one in 25 people

According to the latest official data, more than 2 million people in the UK were infected with the coronavirus last week, leading to a surge in absenteeism and a rapid increase in hospital admissions.

Data released by the UK National Bureau of Statistics on Friday showed that in the week ending December 23, nearly 2.3 million people in the UK were infected with the virus. In England, this rate is one in every 25 people, which is higher than one in 45 people a week ago, while in London the rate is the highest, at one in 15 people.

The comparable ratios in decentralized countries are about one in 40 each.

According to NHS data, on December 26, the rate of NHS Covid-related employee absenteeism in England increased by 31% every week, and 24,632 employees fell ill or self-isolated. In total, about 68,000 employees (5% of the total number of employees) asked for leave for various reasons.

North of England has the highest rate of employee absenteeism. In the Northwest, where the number of Covid-related absenteeism is growing the fastest, 6.2% of the workforce was unemployed for various reasons on December 26.

Despite this trend, British Prime Minister Boris Johnson insisted that health services can better respond Coronavirus surge Than last winter.

In London, the area was first hit by a variant of the Omicron coronavirus, and hospitals were under the most stress, with Covid-related absenteeism being particularly serious. On December 23, nearly 6,000 employees of the Acute Hospital Trust Fund were absent from work due to the virus, a five-fold increase from the 1,174 employees who were absent earlier this month. But there have been some signs of respite in recent days, and the absenteeism rate dropped by 25% between December 23 and December 26.

At the same time, the number of patients receiving treatment for the new coronavirus in the capital has almost doubled, from 850 on December 1 to 1,630 on December 28.

Professor Andrew Goddard, Dean of the Royal College of Physicians, said that the NHS is facing a “double whammy” from a reduction in staff and a surge in Covid enrollment.

“In the next two to three weeks, this is mainly an employee’s illness,” he said. “There is nothing you can do about this, you just have to ride the wind and waves.”

But he said that in the earliest Omicron hotspots, staffing issues may be alleviated in time when health leaders anticipate the worst wave. He said: “We are starting to see those who left because of Covid come back.” “Hopefully when the number of Covid cases starts to increase, the level of staffing may increase.”

Johnson said in his New Year’s speech: “No matter what concerns we have in the coming weeks and months, especially with regard to the increasing number of people in Omicron and hospitals…. We had a much better situation on December 31 this year than last year.”

He added that the government has achieved its goal of providing a booster for every eligible adult in England by the end of the year.

The chart shows that the total occupancy rate of ICU beds in London has declined in recent weeks and has not kept up with the upward trend last winter

Professor Stephen Boyce, the NHS National Medical Director for England, said that the staff of the health service “has been prepared for the worst” and added that the hospital is “doing everything possible to free up beds” in hopes of the surge in Omicron. More Covid hospitalizations.

The bed occupancy rate in the emergency wards and general wards of England hospitals has been reduced from 93% on December 21 to 87% on December 28.

Professor Anthony Gordon, an intensive care consultant at St Mary’s Hospital in London, predicts that the NHS “may have to restrict elective care [and] Possibility to cancel non-emergency operations” in response to pressure from Omicron.

Although the number of people receiving Covid treatment is still much lower than previous waves, the NHS has not cancelled most elective surgeries this time, and is facing high pressure in the accident and emergency department

The chart shows that although the number of Covid hospitalized accidentally in London is on the rise, the number of patients receiving severe Covid treatment is also on the rise

Due to Omicron’s high contagiousness, the proportion of Covid-positive patients in London rose from 18% to 33% in December, but the number of people receiving treatment has continued to increase. For the new coronavirus.

In the week ending December 28, the number of “incidentally” Covid-positive patients in London increased by 396, but the number of people receiving treatment increased by 433.

The chart that illustrates the key question is whether the number of hospitalizations will now rise to the curve of last winter, or will it level off at a lower level

The number of Covid patients using ventilators in London increased slightly in December, but this was much slower than the increase in the overall number of patients, indicating that the proportion of patients who progressed to very serious diseases was lower than in previous waves.

Dr. Zudin Puthucheary, a London-based intensive care consultant and member of the Intensive Care Association, said that the capital’s ICU is “waiting” for a surge, which is expected to appear in mid-January.

He said that plans are being made to redeploy staff “in the opposite direction” from the earlier wave and move clinicians from the intensive care unit to the general ward, where the staff “absolutely bear the brunt” of the increase in hospital admissions.

In addition, on Friday, the drug and health care product regulator approved Paxlovid, a promising anti-Covid drug produced by Pfizer for use in the UK. The UK has ordered 2.75 million courses of oral antiviral drugs and plans to use them to treat elderly and vulnerable patients.

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