R-rate falls in England for first time in weeks

·2-min read
 (AFP via Getty Images)
(AFP via Getty Images)

The coronavirus reproduction number, or R value, in England is between 1.1 and 1.4, according to the latest Government figures.

Last week, it was between 1.2 and 1.4.

R represents the average number of people each Covid-19 positive person goes on to infect.

When the figure is above 1, an outbreak can grow exponentially but when it is below 1, it means the epidemic is shrinking.

An R number between 1.1 and 1.4 means that, on average, every 10 people infected will infect between 11 and 14 other people.

The East of England has the highest R rate in the country, sitting between 1.3 and 1.5.

This is followed by London, the South East and the South West, which are all at 1.2 to 1.5.

The Midlands sits between 1.1 and 1.4, while the North East and Yorkshire sits between 1.1 and 1.3.

The North West currently has the lowest R rate in the country at 1 to 1.2.

Meanwhile, Covid-19 infections are continuing to rise in most parts of the UK, though there are signs the rate of increase in England might have slowed, new figures suggest.

Around one in 65 people in private households in England had Covid-19 in the week to July 24, up from one in 75 in the previous week, according to the latest estimates from the Office for National Statistics (ONS).

This is the highest level since the week of January 30.

One in 65 is the equivalent of around 856,200 people, up from an estimated 741,700 people in the previous week.

It is the ninth week in a row that infection levels in England have increased - though there are "possible signs" the rate of increase may have slowed, the ONS said.

Infections are also estimated to have risen in Wales and Northern Ireland, though numbers have dropped in Scotland.

Around one in 160 people in Wales are estimated to have had Covid-19 in the week to July 24, up from one in 210 and the highest level since the week to February 12.

In Northern Ireland, the latest estimate is around one in 65 people, up from one in 170 - like England, the highest level since the week to January 30.

For Scotland, the ONS estimates that around one in 110 people had Covid-19 in the week to July 24, down from one in 80 in the previous week.

All figures are for people in private households, and do not include hospitals, care homes and other settings.

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