EIGHTEEN councils in Britain are yet to see their coronavirus death peak.
North Somerset, Preston, Doncaster and Carlisle are all among those suffering their worst weeks, according to data from the National Office of Statistics (ONS).
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Brits sighed in relief as Boris Johnson finally announced an easing in lockdown measures, with pubs and restaurants set to open next month.
But while there there has been an overall national decline in covid-19 deaths, areas in England and Wales are yet to see the worst of the pandemic.
Ministers are now concerned that restrictions may have to be re-introduced at local levels, possibly in schools and offices, as part of the government’s track and trace scheme, the Telegraph reports.
In the latest set of ONS figures, analysis found there were 18 areas that had endured their worst week for deaths.
Despite early concern that the North West has taken over from London as the UK covid-19 epicentre, there was no regional pattern in the figures.
The areas, none of which were in the capital, were spread across the country from Ashford in Kent, Wrexham in Wales and Doncaster in South Yorkshire.
Among them was North Somerset, where 24 coronavirus deaths were registered for the weekend ending May 15.
It is very important that we have a very sensitive test, track and trace operation in order to cope with local outbreaks.
The situation was so serious that Weston Hospital, based in the area, had to close to new patients so it could deal with those infected by Covid-19.
This suggests that easing the lockdown measures for that community could be dangerous, as it is still to see the height of its coronavirus peak.
The PM used Weston Hospital as a case study of how the government’s new tactics would work in a speech yesterday.
He told the Liaison Committee: “The other day you saw there was an outbreak in Weston-super-Mare.
“We moved very quickly to close things down there to try to sort it out.
“That is the kind of whack-a-mole tactics that we are going to use as we keep driving the virus down and keep reducing the incidents.
“It is very important that we have a very sensitive test, track and trace operation in order to cope with local outbreaks.”
18 COUNCILS YET TO SEE COVID-19 PEAK
Doncaster, South Yorkshire
Hinckley and Bosworth, Leicestershire
Richmondshire, North Yorkshire
Rother, East Sussex
Selby, North Yorkshire
Tonbridge and Malling, Kent
Wrexham, North Wales
It comes as new figures show the UK has suffered the highest rate of excess deaths during the coronavirus pandemic among all countries with comparable data.
Britain registered 59,537 more deaths than usual since the week ending March 20,
equating to 891 people per million – a higher rate than any other country with the same quality of data.
The data also shows the UK is the worst hit in Europe when it comes to a percentage increase in deaths across the same period, trumped only by Peru internationally.
Yesterday, the Department of Health revealed the nation’s overall death toll from the virus is now 37,460.
The true figure, however, is believed to be much higher, with data from the Office for National Statistics suggesting more than 47,000 people could have been killed by the deadly bug in Britain already.
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