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Parts of UK see big rise in weekly COVID-19 infections: official survey

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LONDON, Sept. 25 (Xinhua) — An estimated 103,600 people within the community population in England had COVID-19 between Sept. 13 and 19, equating to around one in 500 people, Britain’s Office for National Statistics (ONS) said Friday.

In recent weeks, there has been clear evidence of an increase in the number of people testing positive for COVID-19 in all age groups, with the current rates highest in the 17 to 24 years age group, said the ONS in a provisional survey, adding that the incidence rate for England has increased in recent weeks.

The ONS conducted the survey with University of Oxford, the University of Manchester, Public Health England and Wellcome Trust.

In Wales, the team estimates that 10,800 people had COVID-19, equating to one in 300 people during the most recent week (from Sept. 13 to 19).

As for Northern Ireland, the team estimates that 0.35 percent of the local people had COVID-19 from Sept. 6 to 19. The survey does not cover Scotland.

The British government has implemented new restrictive measures to curb the rising number of new COVID-19 confirmed cases.

In his recent speech delivered at the parliament, British Prime Minister Boris Johnson said: “We will spare no effort in developing vaccines, treatments and new forms of mass-testing, but unless we palpably make progress, we should assume that the restrictions I have announced will remain in place for perhaps six months.”

His remarks came at a time when countries, such as Britain, China, Russia and the United States, are racing against time to develop coronavirus vaccines.

The British government’s Chief Scientific Adviser Patrick Vallance said Monday that it is possible that some vaccine could be available in small amounts later this year, but it is more likely that a vaccine will be available early next year, although that is not guaranteed. Enditem

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