The UK was hit with nearly 2,000 new cases on Friday, which was the highest number of cases recorded over a 24-hour period since late May. The areas causing the most concern included Leeds, South Tyneside, Corby, Middlesbrough and Kettering. South Tyneside saw 1,081 cases at a rate of 717 per 100,000, while Middlesborough recorded 1,137 cases at a rate of 806 and Kettering had 702 cases at a rate of 689.
At least 4,703 people in Leeds tested positive for coronavirus, which was a rate of 593 people per 100,000 population.
These areas are at risk of having stricter measures put in place to tackle the spike in cases.
Leeds City Council said in a statement: “The latest seven-day infection figures show Leeds as having a rate of 32.4 cases per 100,000 people and a positivity rate on testing of 3.5 percent.
“The latest data suggests that a lot of the cases are in different areas of the city, meaning they may be linked to social interaction and leisure activities.
“The spread is broad and changeable across wards and cases have also been increasingly detected in younger people aged 18-34, with some concern over activities like house parties and gatherings.”
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8.51am update: Seven £10,000 fines issued to organisers of illegal raves in Leeds amid COVID-19 cases spike
The city’s council leader Judith Blake told BBC Breakfast this morning that the council “fully expected” Leeds to be put on the Government’s Covid-19 watchlist as an “area of concern” due to an increase in cases.
She said: “We have been monitoring our number every single day and we recognise that the numbers have been creeping up, so we fully expected to be on the list to become an area of concern.
“We feel there is a bit of a complacency coming in. What we are seeing is the numbers are changing, and actually more young people are testing positive and they are spread around the city.”
She added: “Unfortunately, we have seen a rise in house parties, but we are working with police.
“Last weekend we issued, with the police, seven of the £10,000 fines for organisers of illegal raves.”
8.37am update: Professor gives update on university students’ risk of developing virus
Dr Mike Tildesley, associate professor of infection modelling at the University of Warwick, said the vast majority of students had a very low risk of developing severe symptoms of Covid-19.
He told the BBC: “What we’re more worried about really is universities acting as amplifiers, so potentially lots of students mixing together that can cause lots of infection that could spill over into the community.
“But also there’s a concern at the end of term when students start to travel home to their families, potentially interacting with more elderly relatives, more vulnerable people with underlying health conditions, that’s where the real concern is.”
He added: “What we don’t want is because of this large mixing in universities, it could cause a knock-on effect and as we approach Christmas, that could cause a significant wave of infection in cities across the UK as students move home.”
7.48am update: Russian scientists claim vaccine shows signs of immune response in patients
Russian scientists have claimed in the first report on their coronavirus vaccine that the latest tests show signs of an immune response.
The report, which was published by medical journal The Lancet, added every person who took part in the testing developed antibodies to fight the virus and had no serious side effects.
It comes after Russia licensed the vaccine for local use in August.
But experts say the trials were too small to prove effectiveness and safety, the BBC has reported.
Published at Sat, 05 Sep 2020 07:19:00 +0000