Here is today’s Covid roundup.
North east in tier 3
The government has placed the north east in tier three of their new restrictions.
Importantly, the rule of six will apply outdoors which means that you can now meet more than one person from another household.
Over 600,000 had Covid last week
An estimated 633,000 people in private households in England had Covid-19 between November 15 and 21, according to the Office for National Statistics (ONS).
This is the equivalent of around 1.16% of the population.
The figures represent a slight decrease from 664,700 people, or 1.22% of the population, who were estimated to have Covid-19 in the period November 8 to 14.
The ONS said in recent weeks the positivity rate for England “has shown signs of levelling”.
The figures do not include people staying in hospitals, care homes or other institutional settings.
Test and trace woes
A total of 50.6% of people who were tested for Covid-19 in England in the week ending November 18 at a regional site, local site or mobile testing unit – a so-called “in-person” test – received their result within 24 hours.
This is up from 38.0% in the previous week.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson had pledged that, by the end of June, the results of all in-person tests would be back within 24 hours.
He told the House of Commons on June 3 that he would get “all tests turned around within 24 hours by the end of June, except for difficulties with postal tests or insuperable problems like that”.
Test and trace woes 2
Some 60.3% of close contacts of people who tested positive for Covid-19 in England were reached through the Test and Trace system in the week ending November 18, according to the latest figures.
This is down slightly from 60.7% in the previous week, and is also just above the all-time low of 60.1% for the week to October 14.
For cases managed by local health protection teams, 99.0% of contacts were reached and asked to self-isolate in the week to November 18.
For cases managed either online or by call centres, 58.8% of close contacts were reached and asked to self-isolate.