The number of patients in hospital with coronavirus in England has climbed to its highest level since February, new figures show.
The latest data from NHS England shows there were 11,452 people in hospital in England with Covid-19 as of 8am on Thursday, up 61% from a week earlier and the highest number since February 26.
The London region had the highest number of beds occupied by confirmed Covid patients, at 3,477, up 66% week-on-week and the highest number since February 16.
During the second wave of coronavirus the number of Covid patients in hospital peaked in both England and London on January 18, at 34,336 and 7,917 respectively.
The data, published on Thursday, also showed there were 2,082 Covid-19 hospital admissions in England on Tuesday.
This is up 90% week-on-week and is the highest number since February 3.
It is also more than half the peak of 4,134 coronavirus hospital admissions reported on January 12 during the second wave of coronavirus.
In London, 456 admissions were reported on December 28, up 49% week-on-week and the highest number since January 28.
Admissions during the second wave peaked in London at 977 on January 6.
The number of Covid-19 admissions includes people admitted to hospital in the previous 24 hours who were known to have Covid-19, plus patients diagnosed in hospital with Covid-19 in the previous 24 hours.
Separate data on hospital admissions suggests that 71% of Covid patients in hospitals in England on December 21 were primarily being treated for the virus.
The remaining 29% were there “with Covid”, suggesting they tested positive on arrival for another ailment or tested positive during their stay.
More up-to-date figures are expected from NHS England on Friday.