COVID-related deaths up by nearly 5% according to latest report

Hand sanitiser and a face mask- photo by Connor Gormley

A report released by the National Office of Statistics has revealed that COVID related deaths were up by 3.7% on the week ending November 13, making up just over 20% of that week’s total deaths.

That means 2,466 of the 12,254 deaths reported that week involved the pandemic, 529 more than the week prior. Only 88% were the direct result of the new disease, however. The remaining 11.5% had pre-existing conditions like influenza or pneumonia which exacerbated the conditions of the disease.

The increase brings the total number of deaths caused by or related to the coronavirus to 11,495, with increases all over the country, but most pronounced in the North West, which saw 651 deaths.

That means the COVID death rate has been increasing for ten consecutive weeks now, and doing so at a fairly startling rate, but it doesn’t mean the numbers are anywhere near as high as they once were. Deaths related to COVID-19, which peaked at around 8,758 are still lower than they were during the first lockdown and do not seem to be rising as quickly.

Even so, the UK remains one of the worst-affected countries in the European Union, according to the European Centre for Disease and Control. With 55,230 total deaths and 1,527,495 cases, it’s followed only by Italy’s 1,431,795 cases and 50,453 deaths.

The reports come alongside news that the vaccine for the disease, which is being developed by US pharmaceutical firm Pfizer, had a 90% efficacy rate in recent trials by the University of Oxford.

Secretary of State for Health and Social Care Matt Hancock said that, if the vaccines are properly regulated, the roll-out could begin as early as next month, with ‘the bulk’ of the vaccines being delivered in the new year.

‘We’re heading in the right direction,’ he said ‘but there is still a long way to go. Coronavirus remains a grave danger right now.’

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