Coronavirus case rates have dropped week-on-week across every region of England, new analysis has shown.
The analysis by the PA news agency shows that of the 315 local areas in England, 279 (89%) have seen a fall in case rates in the seven days to January 13 compared with the previous week, while 36 (11%) have seen a rise.
The rates have fallen across every region in the country over the same period, with the highest drop in London, down from 1,014.6 cases per 100,000 people to 761.3 in the week to January 13.
It is followed by eastern England, which is down from 755.0 to 556.6 and the South East which is down from 688.7 to 530.4.
The case rates in the other regions of England are:
– North East: down from 429.0 to 341.8
– West Midlands: down from 617.6 to 562.3
– East Midlands: down from 454.8 to 407.7
– North West: down from 597.2 to 554.3
– Yorkshire and Humber: down from 319.2 to 283.5
– South West: down from 381.7 to 348.9
But the number of Covid-19 patients in hospital has risen week-on-week across every region in England.
The latest data from NHS England shows the number of Covid-19 patients in hospital in England stood at 33,352 as of 8am on Sunday January 17.
This is a small drop on the record 33,362 reported on Friday January 15, but up 8% on a week ago (January 10), and up 88% since Christmas Day.
While the number of coronavirus patients in hospitals has increased across every region week-on-week, in London, the East of England and South East – which have had some of the highest rates – the rise has been by less than 5%.
In London, the number stands at 7,707 patients, up 3% in a week, while south-east England has 5,387 patients, up 0.3%, and eastern England has 4,177, up 2%.
However, the Midlands reported a record 6,077 coronavirus patients in hospital, up 15% on the previous week; north-west England has a record 4,151, up 20%; north-east England/Yorkshire has a record 3,604, up 12%; and south-west England has 2,249, up 25% and just below a record 2,269 reported on Saturday January 16.
Professor Stephen Powis, national medical director for the NHS in England, said it will take a number of weeks before a slowdown in infection rates has an effect on the number of people in hospital.
On when the current lockdown measures will have an effect on hospital admissions, he told PA: “I think we are beginning to see an effect of lockdown measures.
“We know the lockdown measures work, we saw that in April, we saw it in November.
“And we are beginning to see it now and that’s good news because, of course, we have also had this new strain which is more transmissible.
“So although infection rates are beginning to slow, maybe here in London and a little bit less so in the rest of the country, it will be a number of weeks before we start to see that effect on the number of people in hospitals.”
The number of hospital admissions of people with Covid-19 in England was 3,295 on January 15, according to the latest figures from NHS England.
This is down from a record 4,134 Covid-19 hospital admissions reported for January 12, and the third consecutive day it has fallen.
The figure is also down 7% on the equivalent figure a week ago on January 8.
During the first wave of the virus, admissions peaked at 3,099 on April 1 2020.
Three of the seven regions have recorded a week-on-week drop in daily admissions: London is down 18%, eastern England down 15% and south-east England down 26%.
The North West recorded the highest week-on-week increase in Covid admissions, from 385 on January 8 to 434 on January 15 (13%), followed closely by the North East and Yorkshire with a rise of 12%, a 9% increase in the South West, and a 0.75% rise in the Midlands.
The figures cover all patients admitted in the previous 24 hours who were known to have Covid-19, plus any patients diagnosed in hospital with Covid-19 in the previous 24 hours.