By Grahame Anderson

According to the latest figures from Public Health England COVID-19 has continued to decline in England. It’s true to say Case detections are highest in the East Midlands, Yorkshire and Humber and North West. In week 26 of the crisis up to the end of June 4,100 cases were detected – these were highest in adults aged 75 and older and in 15 to 44 year olds.

Public Health England have said: “There have been declines in the number of care home and hospital incidents, the number of incidents in educational settings remains relatively stable whereas the number of incidents in workplaces has increased from 22 in week 25 to 43 in week 26.

“Emergency department attendances with a COVID-19-like diagnosis and hospitalisations and critical care admissions for confirmed COVID-19 continue to decline slowly. At a local authority level, activity remains highest in Leicester, though the weekly incidence of confirmed cases has stabilised.

“Despite a small increase in hospitalisations in the Midlands. COVID-19 deaths also continue to decline and, while delays to death registrations can impact on the most recent data, there was no detectable excess mortality in week 25 in any age group or region.”

Asian Sunday can confirm Nationally, a further 42 people who tested positive for the virus have died. This brings the total number of confirmed reported deaths in hospitals in England to 28,969, according to NHS figures released on Wednesday. Six of those deaths occurred at hospitals in the North East and Yorkshire region. Looking UK wide there were 286,979 cases recorded up to late afternoon on Wednesday, an increase of 630. The number of deaths had reached 44,517 – a rise of 126.

Though the virus is in decline rates and positivity of cases continue to be highest in the North and Central regions of England.

The actual number of cases is certain to be much higher simply because many people with symptoms have not been tested. Cases data for England comes from Public Health England and includes only tests carried out by public health bodies, known as “pillar 1” testing. Those tests carried out by commercial testers are classified as “pillar 2”

By the end of June, a total of 1,500,996 people had been tested under Pillar 1. A total of 242,764 have been confirmed positive for COVID-19 in England under Pillar 1 and 2.

More than 75 per cent of cases are now detected through testing outside of hospitals.

Former government scientific adviser Professor Neil Ferguson has said: ‘It’s inevitable we will see further outbreaks, we are relaxing lockdown rules and that means that contacts in the population are going up and that’s a very variable process. ‘I think there are a set of measures being introduced in those areas to track down transmissions but whether we need more measures will depend on whether we can pull case numbers down.

A second national wave is an agglomeration of small outbreaks like the Leicester one merged together across the country that’s exactly what we want to avoid by snuffing out those small outbreaks when they are just sparks, when we’re not seeing a national large increase in case numbers.”