Covid-19 deaths creep up with 321 victims in England and Wales

Covid-19 deaths continue to creep up with 321 victims in England and Wales last week – but data shows only ONE person under 30 has succumbed to the illness since August

  • One of the 1,373 deaths from Covid-19 to occur since the start of August has been in the under 30s
  • But at least 796 have occurred in the over 80s, highlighting the disproportionate impact on the elderly
  • Covid-19 deaths have risen by 49 per cent compared to the previous week, when 215 victims were registered 

The number of deaths from coronavirus in England and Wales has surged for the fourth week in a row, official figures reveal, but only one person under 30 has died from the virus since August.

Covid-19 was mentioned on 321 death certificates in the week ending October 2, according to the Office for National Statistics (ONS). This marked a 49 per cent rise on the 215 deaths recorded the previous week, and almost double the 139 deaths recorded a fortnight ago.

Just one of the 1,373 fatalities to occur from Covid-19 since August was under 30, and only 97 were under the age of 59, once again highlighting the devastating impact Covid-19 is having on older age groups. Registered deaths involving the virus increased in seven out of nine regions in England.

The ONS divides figures by date death occurred and date death was registered by officials. A spokesman said this can produce a discrepancy in the numbers as a death may occur in one week, but not be registered until the next. But they said the registered figure, which is when a death certificate is issued, is used in their data because it is when a death from Covid-19 has been confirmed.

Despite fatalities rising across the board, weekly deaths are still a fraction of what they were during the darkest days of the crisis, when there were 8,800 victims a week. And flu and pneumonia are still killing more than three times the number of people as coronavirus, with 1,155 people succumbing to the respiratory illness in the last seven days.

Meanwhile deaths in private homes are remaining above the average – with 725 – while they continue to remain below the average in hospitals and care homes.

Experts say many people are still too scared to use the NHS for fear of catching Covid-19, while others don’t want to be a burden on the health service. Hospitals are still scrambling to get services back up and running and cut down record waiting lists after months of operating at a fraction of their capacity. 

This pie chart shows the number of deaths that occurred from coronavirus between August 1 and October 2 broken down by age, according to the ONS. It shows only one of the fatalities was recorded in the under 30s age category. Death occurrences are different from registered deaths as not every death in this number will have been issued with a death certificate

Deaths from Covid-19 surged the most in those aged 80 to 84 years compared to last week, according to the ONS, where 29 more fatalities occurred and the total rose from 42 to 71.

The figure jumped by 21 for those aged 75 to 79, by 19 for the 70 to 74 age bracket and by 17 for those aged 85 to 89. It fell compared to last week in the 50 to 59 age bracket. There was one death for those under 30 where Covid-19 was mentioned on the death certificate, for an individual between 25 and 29 years old.

As many as 53,187 fatalities in England and Wales have Covid-19 on their death certificates up to October 2, accounting for 11.5 per cent of all deaths in the UK nations since the start of this year.

In Scotland there were 4,276 fatalities registered where Covid-19 was mentioned since October 4, according to the National Records for Scotland. 

And in Northern Ireland there were 902 fatalities up to October 2, according to the UK nation’s Statistics and Research Agency.

The estimate is far above the Department of Health’s tally of 42,875, because the ONS includes people who have not tested positive for the virus but were suspected of suffering from the disease.

The 321 victims from Covid-19 this week accounted for 3.2 per cent of all deaths in England and Wales, a higher proportion than last week where they were only 2.2 per cent.

Deaths from all causes were 390 above the five-year average expected for this time of year, the fourth consecutive week in which this figure has been exceeded. 

Experts say this number should eventually fall below the average, as Covid-19 caused many people to die earlier than had been expected.

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