CORONAVIRUS infection levels have plunged to rates not seen since September, with several areas now recording no new daily infections, data has revealed.
Infections are so low that the pandemic is now moving towards an endemic, one expert has today claimed.
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Current infection levels are among the lowest to have been recorded by experts at the ZOE Symptom Tracker app, with just 757 infections being logged each day in England.
There are currently 1,046 new symptomatic cases of Covid in the UK on average compared to 1,165 daily cases a week ago.
This is a decrease of 10 per cent from last week and study lead, Professor Tim Spector from King’s College London said that rates are beginning to plateau, moving the UK into a new era of the pandemic.
Three regions also recorded no new infections, these are the East of England, the North East and Northern Ireland.
“Prof Spector said: “Consistent low levels signal that we’re moving from a Covid pandemic to Covid becoming endemic in the UK, where we expect to see low levels in the population with the occasional outbreak.
“It’s very reassuring that low rates continue despite reopening gyms and outdoor areas in pubs and restaurants, and bodes well for further relaxation of restrictions in line with the government roadmap out of lockdown.”
The next round of lockdown measures are set to be relaxed on May 17 with pubs being able to open indoors and overnight visits permitted.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson has said there is “nothing in the current data” that suggests restrictions won’t be able to be lifted further next month.
PHE’s weekly surveillance report states case rates in all regions of England have either fallen very slightly or remain broadly unchanged.
Yorkshire and the Humber recorded the highest rate in the seven days to April 25: 44.7 cases per 100,000 people, down very slightly from 46.0 in the previous week.
South-west England had the lowest rate: 14.2, broadly unchanged from 14.4.
This echoes the ZOE data which also shows that Yorkshire and the Humber is the most infected region in England with 274 new cases each day.
It’s followed by the South East with 239, the North West 146, the East Midlands 66, the West Midlands 57, the South West 36 and London with 31.
The data from the Zoe app comes after data from Public Health England (PHE) revealed that Covid-19 case rates have dropped below 50 cases per 100,000 people in more than 95 per cent of local areas of the UK.
It’s the first time since September that 19 in 20 areas have seen their rates plunge with around one in 10 areas recording rates in single figures
It’s a complete turnaround from the data in January – when the UK was trying to overcome infections caused by the Kent variant.
By comparison, in January only three of the 380 local areas had rates below 50 per 100,000 and now, 364 out of 380 are below this rate.
In England only a dozen areas are still above 50, ranging from Selby on 109.2, the highest rate anywhere in the UK, to Slough on 53.5.
Three local areas, Maldon in Essex, Shetland and the Western Isles, are currently recording case rates of zero.
The third national coronavirus lockdown, coupled with the successful jabs rollout across the UK has helped drive infection rates down.
Three vaccines are currently being rolled out across the UK, the Pfizer/BioNTech, the Oxford/AstraZeneca and the Moderna jab.
Over 33.9 million people have now had a first dose, with 13.5 having had a second.
Scientists revealed today that even if you haven’t had a coronavirus jab, the risk of you catch the infection is now one in 45,000.
ZOE app data shows that a small proportion of those who have been vaccinated still get infected.
It collected reports from 31 contributors who had an infection after two doses of the vaccine, and 87 who had an infection after one dose.
It found that the risk of infection after one vaccine dose is one in 100,000 and after two it jumps to 150,000.