The number of coronavirus cases in the UK rose by 7143 today – the biggest daily rise recorded since the start of the outbreak.
Another 71 COVID deaths were also confirmed – the highest the number has been since July 1 when 97 fatalities were logged.
It brings the total number of COVID deaths in Britain to 42,072 while 446,156 have now tested positive for the bug, The Sun reports.
The daily death toll remains just a fraction of those seen at the peak of the outbreak, where the seven-day average peaked at 941 on April 13.
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Recent figures also show flu and pneumonia is currently claiming the lives of around 10 times more Brits than coronavirus.
On Friday, the number of infections grew by 6874 – the highest daily rise in cases until now.
Today’s figures are considerably higher than they were last Tuesday, when cases grew by 4926 and the number of deaths rose by 37.
The number of patients in hospital with COVID-19 has also started to rise in recent weeks after admissions flattened off at the start of August.
The most up to date figures for the whole of the UK show 2049 patients were in hospital with the bug on Sunday – and as of Monday, 297 of these were on ventilators.
In England, 44 deaths were confirmed today, bringing the total number of COVID fatalities in English hospitals to 29,962.
The patients, who died between September 23 and September 28 were aged between 47 and 99 – and all had underlying health conditions.
Three more deaths were confirmed in Wales, bringing the grim toll there to 1615.
No deaths were recorded in Scotland or Northern Ireland, leaving the respective tallies there at 2512 and 578.
Another 806 infections were confirmed in Scotland, meaning 28,604 Scots have now tested positive for the bug in total.
In Wales, the total number of positive test results sits at 23,597, after 366 more cases were reported today.
Another 320 infections were reported in Northern Ireland.
ADDRESS THE NATION
Prime Minister Boris Johnson is expected to address the nation’s surging infection rate tomorrow in a rare press conference with chief medical officer Chris Whitty and chief scientific adviser Patrick Vallance.
The PM is not expected to announce further national restrictions but he will address the worrying coronavirus figures – as fears of a second national lockdown grow.
Professor Whitty and Sir Patrick briefed the nation on the grim situation last week, warning the UK could see 50,000 coronavirus cases a day in just three weeks if the bug continues to spread at its current rate.
A crackdown on cases has already begun in parts of England with Sunderland, Durham, Newcastle and Northumberland to be outlawed from popping round to a friend’s for a tea from tomorrow.
They make up some of the 17 million Brits currently subject to local lockdown restrictions, including bans on meeting up with other households.
And there are warnings that London could be given fresh lockdown rules banning meeting with other households.
But as more places were given different disjointed rules, even the PM was unable to clearly explain what they were today as he fumbled over whether people could meet outdoors in the North East.
Mr Johnson was forced to clarify the rules with a tweet just hours after a chaotic press conference.
This article originally appeared on The Sun and has been republished with permission.