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England and Wales COVID-19 cases have levelled off

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The number of people testing positive for COVID-19 in private households in England and Wales has levelled off in the past week, new government figures show.

An estimated 28,300 people in England had coronavirus during the week of 27 July to 2 August, the latest data from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) found.

That equates to about 0.05% of the population, or one in 1,900 individuals – and does not include the number of cases and infections in care homes and hospitals.

The ONS said while recent figures suggest the percentage of individuals testing positive for COVID-19 had risen since the end of June – the lowest recorded estimate – there is now evidence to suggest this trend may have levelled off.

Data from the week before – 20-26 July – found an estimated 35,700 people within the community in England had coronavirus – 7,400 more than the week after.

For the most recent week, there were around 3,700 new cases each day in private households in England – about 0.68 new cases for every 10,000 people and a decrease of 500 a day from the previous week.

That is an increase since the end of June, but the data analysts said this showed the incidence rate may also be levelling off when compared to last week.

The week before, there were around 4,200 new cases per day – about 0.78 new infections for every 10,000 people in the community.

People were warned to stay away from packed beaches such as Bournemouth as social distancing was not possible

In Wales, the latest data found 1,400 people had COVID-19 from 27 July to 2 August in the community – about one in 2,200 people or 0.04% of the population.

This is the first week the data has been available for Wales, after the ONS started collecting data there on 29 June.

Data for Northern Ireland will be published when there is a sufficiently large sample and the ONS said it is working with authorities to possibly expand the survey to Scotland.