Daily Covid infections fall 27% in a week as over 1,000 cases of new variant detected


DAILY Covid cases in the UK have fallen by 27 per cent on last week’s figures, data has revealed.

A further 26,147 people tested positive for the virus today, but experts say a new strain is set to become dominant in the UK.

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The chart above shows how infection rates have fallen over the last few weeks

Already 1,179 cases of the XE Covid strain have been found in the country since January.

However, due to bank holiday delays in reporting data, the UK Health and Security Agency has not given an updated figure since April 8.

“The early signs are that it is going to be very transmissible so it will probably become the dominant strain again,” said Dr Alan Stout, chair of the British Medical Association’s GP committee in Northern Ireland, according to the Independent.

“Again the early signs from elsewhere are that it’s not causing any more serious illness and that the vaccine is protecting people. 

New Omicron variant 'likely to become dominant' as 1,179 UK cases detected
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“So even though it will most likely become dominant it hopefully won’t cause any significant problems.”

Most people thankfully recovered at home with the milder strain of Omicron, but some more vulnerable patients will need hospital treatment.

It’s not thought that the new strain will be more severe than Omicron.

Cases had slightly risen last month, but health secretary, Sajid Javid said this was to be expected after restrictions were lifted.

He added that the government hadn’t been concerned, due to the fact that Omicron is a milder virus.

The drop in falling official cases coincided with the scrapping of free tests last month – but the rise had started to dip before then.

Vaccines are the best line of defence, health bosses say, with a new study showing symptoms in the triple jabbed last on average half as long as a common cold.

Today a further 508 deaths were recorded, 28 days after a positive coronavirus test.

This is however a fall from the 651 deaths recorded this time last week.

Spring boosters are being dished out for certain groups in society, to keep their immunity high.

Brits are still being urged to come forward for their next dose as the year progresses – as it’s the best way to protect everyone from the virus.

Omicron strains of Covid have so far been milder than those that have come before, with hospitalisation rates much lower in those infected with it.

But with new XE variant, vaccine uptake will help curb the spread.

The vaccines work against Omicron, but the initial two-dose course is not enough, health officials warn.

XE is known as a recombinant variant, which is when the genetics of two strains jumble together to create a new version.

The UKHSA said in early April current estimates are that XE spreads 12.6 per cent faster than the current strain BA.2.

There was evidence that XE was in circulation among England’s population, with most cases in London and the East and South East.

Health chiefs said they would continue to monitor the variant and did not have any conclusions about its disease severity.

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