The largest coronavirus infection survey in England has given a ray of hope that the rate of epidemic growth has begun to decline after a very rapid rise for most of September, as the “rule of six” and other social distancing measures are activated.
The The study is by Imperial College London It is based on swab tests on a random sample of 84,000 people between 18 and 26 September. Initial results indicate that the number of reproductive R has decreased to 1.1 from 1.7 earlier in the month, although the researchers said there is a wide margin of error – R, the average number of people infected with the virus, can range from 0.7 to 1.5.
These results come after British Prime Minister Boris Johnson warned on Wednesday that more restrictions could be imposed on the Corona virus soon, as his chief scientific adviser Patrick Vallance admitted that the virus was not “under control.”
Stephen Reilly, co-author of the Imperial Report, compared the trajectory of the epidemic to someone climbing a hill and found that the gradient became less steep. “We don’t know if we have reached the summit yet,” he said.
Paul Elliott, director of the Imperial Poll React, added that the recent decline in the R number should not undermine the government’s drive for more compliance with social distancing measures.
He said: “While our recent results show some early evidence that the growth of new cases may have slowed, indicating that infection control efforts are working successfully, the spread of infection is the highest we have recorded so far.” “One in every 200 people walking on the streets today is injured.”
The report found that the spread of infection rose everywhere, but it was still higher in northwest England at 0.86 per cent. Cases increased dramatically in London, rising fivefold, from 0.10 per cent to 0.49 per cent.
A few hours after the poll results were published, the government announced further restrictions in northern England affecting more than 2 million people in seven neighborhoods in and around Merseyside and Tees Valley.
Under the rule changes, it will become illegal to meet people from different families indoors in bars and restaurants in the Liverpool, Warrington, Middlesbrough and Hartlepool city areas. The measures, which are expected to come into effect at the end of the week, match those imposed in the north-east of England last week.
Imperial researchers estimated that 0.55 percent of the population was infected with the SARS-CoV-2 virus that causes Covid-19, compared to 0.13% in the previous test round between August 22 and September 7.
Professor Riley said: “There is preliminary evidence that the epidemic is slowing but it is only preliminary. The key for me is that the rate of spread has to decrease.”
The infection is increasing more rapidly in people over the age of 65, who have tested positive seven times more than in the previous round. But the highest rates of infection among young people continued, with an estimated 1 in 100 people between the ages of 18 and 24 infected with the virus.
Commenting on the findings, the Imperial College team said in an unpublished paper: “The rate of increase in prevalence is slowed … the government-promoted public health message campaign follows for individuals to comply with social distancing measures, and restrict the number of people who visit private homes or meet outdoors in Any time, and more recently, bars and pubs closed by 10 pm and social distancing rules enforced. “
Professor Riley said that the recent slowdown was “evidence that people have changed their behavior” during September, but the data was not strong enough to link the decline in R to the “rule of six” that goes into effect on September 14 or any other specific action.
Regional data indicate that recent increases are not limited to local outbreaks, although there is some evidence of local populations. The researchers said, “This means that strengthening public health measures on social mixing and divergence must occur at the national level, and not only at the local level where” hotspots “are discovered.