In Scotland, 113,500 people, or one in 45, were likely to have tested positive for Covid in the past week – compared with 104,400, or one in 50, according to the Office for National Statistics (ONS). Meanwhile, the ONS described trends in both Wales and Northern Ireland as “uncertain”.
The ONS estimated there were 881,200 people with coronavirus in private households across the UK in the week ending September 5. That’s down from 944,700 last week and the lowest total since the seven days to September 25 last year.
Dr Simon Clarke, from the University of Reading, said: “I think we should take this as a warning that the number of infections is likely to start rising soon where it hasn’t already. What exact impact this will have on hospitals, we can’t be sure, because we don’t yet have a good sense of what the level of society’s protection against serious diseases will be.
“This could of course be exacerbated by linking it to seasonal flu, which we haven’t properly experienced yet.”
There are also concerns that a devastating flu season is expected this winter, which, combined with the rising number of Covid cases, could lead to a dangerous “twindemic”.
There are five signs of infection that are most common in fully vaccinated people, according to the latest findings from the Covid ZOE app, which is investigating common symptoms among UK coronavirus sufferers.
The most common symptoms in fully vaccinated people
According to the platform’s findings, covid-19 symptoms reported by vaccinated and unvaccinated people were similar, but those who had recently received the jab reported fewer symptoms over a shorter period of time, suggesting that that they were less serious. got sick and recovered faster.
The most common symptom after two vaccinations was a runny nose. It’s a symptom that’s often overlooked as a cold, but according to the platform, it’s best to get tested if a common side effect occurs.
Next on the list of common symptoms in covid vaccinated are headaches. This is followed by sneezing, a sore throat, and finally the stubborn cough that was once the main symptom at the start of the 2020 pandemic.
Previously “traditional” symptoms, as still described on the government website, such as anosmia (loss of smell), shortness of breath and fever, are ranked far down the list, at 6, 29 and 8 respectively, the ZOE app said. A persistent cough is now 5th in people with two doses of the vaccine, so it is no longer the main indicator that they have covid.
People who had been vaccinated and subsequently tested positive for COVID-19 were more likely to report sneezing as a symptom compared to those without the jab.
Professor Azeem Majeed, head of public health at Imperial College London, said vaccination would be “essential” to survive the winter period.
“There is concern about a ‘twindemic’, the last two winters we have seen high levels of covid due to omicron, so it is likely we will see the same again due to covid,” Professor Majeed said The Independent.
“At the same time, flu rates have been quite low over the last few years because of all the measures that have been put in place, like face masks, working from home, so we’ve been quite lucky, but this winter we’ll have normal social activities, people will be mingling a lot more, so there’s a chance they’ll have a high rate of flu.”
Prof Majeed urged people to get tested if they experience any symptoms of Covid, but admitted the government had made it more difficult after it stopped providing free testing kits.
He warned that increased public health warnings ahead of the autumn-winter season could help prevent a spike in cases that would lead to a new wave of Covid.
dr. Jamie Lopez Bernal, consultant epidemiologist for immunization and countermeasures at UKHSA, said: “As respiratory viruses increase in the winter months, we can expect to see an increase in Covid-19 cases in the coming weeks.
“We are urging everyone we have contacted to come forward and receive their booster when they are called for a jab. The NHS booking system is now open to people with weakened immune systems and the over 75s.
“We also encourage everyone to continue to help reduce the spread of the virus – gather in well-ventilated areas, wash your hands regularly and stay away from others where possible if you have symptoms of respiratory illness.”