UK could be 'over the edge' of the third wave of Covid-19, commentator says

3 August 2021, 08:23

EJ Ward

By EJ Ward

The nation could be "over the edge" of the third wave of Covid-19, a health commentator has told LBC.

The third wave of Covid-19 hospital admissions in England may have peaked, new figures suggest.

A total of 593 admissions of patients with coronavirus were recorded on July 31, NHS England said.

This is down 19% on the previous week, and is the lowest daily number since July 16.

The seven-day average for admissions has also started to decrease, falling four days in a row from 793 on July 27 to 744 on July 31.

Speaking to LBC's Tom Swarbrick Jamie Jenkins, former head of health statistics at the Office for National Statistics, said: "(Cases) in England and Wales have been coming down since July 19, the cases have been falling for a couple of weeks there, then you get that time-lag effect when cases start coming down you get, around five or six days later, you start seeing hospital admissions come down, and then you start seeing deaths come down.

"I think looking at the data, we normally see deaths peaking around 14 days after cases come down, I think we might start being over the hill now when it comes to deaths."

Mr Jenkins added: "We probably are over the edge of the wave at the moment but let's have a bit of caution as we go into the autumn period."

He said that hospital admissions were around 80% lower than what they would have been in the past and deaths were 90% lower, adding: "The vaccine effect has kicked in as well - if you look at the same number of cases to what we had in the winter, it would have been 800 deaths rather than 65-70."

The figures are the first sign the recent drop in new cases of Covid-19 could be having an impact on hospital numbers.

Any change in the level of new reported cases of coronavirus typically takes a while to show up in hospital data, due to the length of time between someone testing positive for Covid-19 and then becoming ill enough to require hospital care.

Though hospital admissions appear to have peaked, the number of people in hospital with Covid-19 is continuing to rise - though the rate of increase is slowing down.

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