The number of new coronavirus cases in Cornwall has started to drop week-on-week following a large rise two weeks ago.
As of yesterday evening (Thursday) there had been 270 cases confirmed in the seven days leading up to October 31, which represented a weekly rate of 47.2 cases per 100,000 people.
This was compared to 280 new cases reported in the seven days leading up to October 29, which represented a rate of 49.0 new cases per 100,000 people.
Last Thursday’s update saw more than 100 extra cases week-on-week. Now the latest figures are showing a reduction of ten on the overall seven-day total, suggesting that the spread of the virus may have started to slow.
The figures are based on tests carried out in laboratories (pillar one of the Government’s testing programme) and in the wider community (pillar two), with the rate expressed as the number of new cases per 100,000 people.
Data for the most recent five days, November 1 to November 5, has been excluded as it is incomplete and does not reflect the true number of cases.
It is based on Public Health England data published on November 5 on the Government’s coronavirus dashboard.
The apparent slowing of the virus transmission is a trend reflected in the south west as a whole, which now has a reproduction number – or ‘R’ – of 1.2 to 1.4.
This is the number of people the government and SAGE (the Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies) believe someone with the virus will go on to infect and is slightly down from the 1.2 to 1.5 estimated seven days ago.
Today’s figures from the Government also shows that SAGE expects the virus to grow at a slightly slower rate than last week. It is now estimating a rise of between +3 per cent and +7 per cent in new infections each day, which is also a very small drop on the highest estimated rate of growth last Friday, when the margin was +4 to +7 per cent.
The south west’s predictions remain slightly higher than for the UK as a whole, which has the same R number of 1.1 to 1.3 and growth rate, of between +2 per cent and +4 per cent each day, as last week.
The government states: “It is SAGE’s expert view that this week’s estimates are reliable, and that there is still growth of the epidemic across the country.
“These estimates represent the transmission of Covid-19 over the past few weeks due to the time delay between someone being infected, having symptoms and needing healthcare.
“Estimates for R and growth rates are shown as a range, and the true values are likely to lie within this range.”
These are the latest R and growth rate estimates by NHS England regions:
Region R Growth rate % per day
England 1.1-1.3 +2 to +4
East of England 1.1-1.4 +3 to +6
London 1.1-1.3 +2 to +5
Midlands 1.1-1.3 +3 to +5
North East and Yorkshire 1.1-1.2 +1 to +4
North West 1.0-1.1 0 to +2
South East 1.2-1.4 +4 to +6
South West 1.2-1.4 +3 to +7
And the most recent Office for National Statistics (ONS) data also suggests that the rate of coronavirus infections across England and Wales appears to be slowing down.
The ONS said an estimated 618,700 people in England – one in 90 – had Covid-19 between October 25 and 31, up from 568,100 the week before.
But while the infection rate has increased in recent weeks, “the rate of increase is less steep compared with previous weeks”, it said.