Flu and pneumonia killed 10 times as many Brits as Covid-19 last week, statistics show

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Influenza and pneumonia killed 10 times as many Brits as Covid-19 last week, new statistics have shown.

The Office for National Statistics (ONS) revealed that in the week ending 28 August 2020 1,040 deaths were linked to influenza or pneumonia.

However, just 101 deaths were linked to coronavirus.

The ONS noted: “A death can be registered with both COVID-19 and Influenza and Pneumonia mentioned on the death certificate.

“Because pneumonia may be a consequence of COVID-19, deaths where both were mentioned have been counted only in the COVID-19 category.”

What’s more, the number of Covid-19 deaths has fallen to the lowest number since 13 March, according to the ONS.

It added: “The number of death registrations in England and Wales involving COVID-19 decreased by 37 deaths from 138 in Week 34 to 101 in Week 35, the lowest number of COVID-19 deaths registered since Week 11 (week ending 13 March) – the first week COVID-19 deaths were registered (five deaths).

“Of all deaths registered in Week 35, 1.1% mentioned COVID-19, down from 1.4% in Week 34.”

The new figures come shortly after the UK government announced a huge flu vaccination programme for this winter.

Providers will work to vaccinate more than 30 million people during this flu season – with people on the Shielded Patient List and Year 7 pupils now among those eligible for a free jab.

While everyone over 50 and below 65 will be offered free vaccinations later in the season.

The unprecedented drive will also see free jabs for all over 65s, pregnant women and those with pre-existing conditions – including at-risk under 2s.

Health Secretary Matt Hancock said: “It’s mission critical that we pull out all the stops to get ready for winter.

“We are now taking another important step to help protect the wider public by giving the flu vaccination to more people than ever before.

“This will be the biggest flu vaccination programme in history, and will help protect our NHS as we head into winter.”

“If you are eligible for a free vaccine, whether it’s for the first time or because you usually receive one, then I would urge you to get it, not just to protect yourself, but to protect the NHS and your loved ones, from flu,” he added.

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