Daily Covid cases in Britain hit three-month high

Covid cases today hit a three-month high and hospital admissions rose again – but deaths fell.

The Health Ministry’s daily update found 42,776 positive tests across the country in the past 24 hours, up seven percent from the previous week.

The figure is the highest since July 21, when 44,104 infections were reported and marks the eighth day in a row of rising cases.

Meanwhile, hospital admissions rose 10.4 percent week-over-week to 754, while deaths fell five percent to 136.

Both measures are a few weeks behind the number of cases, due to the time it takes a person to become seriously unwell after contracting the virus.

It comes amid growing fears the fourth wave is just around the corner, with infections now popping up in every age group.

More chaos for holidaymakers after NHS Covid vaccine pass app crashed for four hours

The NHS app today did not allow anyone to see their Covid vaccine cards for more than four hours, preventing holidaymakers from boarding flights.

In even more travel chaos, the controversial software — which allows people to prove their vaccination status — failed to display QR code passes due to “high traffic volumes.”

Users of the app started having problems before noon and the health department said they were investigating the issue. Shortly after 4:10 PM, the app started working again.

Meanwhile, desperate people traveling abroad claim they have had to miss their flight.

One person claimed he was “stuck” in Greece because he was not allowed to board a trip back to England from Greece without the QR code. Another Brit currently in Naples said he couldn’t even “go for ap*** because the app is broken”.

Others worry about their upcoming vacation plans, not being able to fill out passenger locator forms for flights today and tomorrow.

The app problems are the latest in a series of issues travelers will face this summer, with queues of up to four hours building up to Heathrow arrivals last week due to e-gates crashing at the airport.

Ministers rolled out the UK’s new simplified travel system last Monday, replacing traffic light rules with a single go/no go system.

Fully vaccinated travelers returning from a country that is not on the red list are not required to take a pre-departure test and are exempt from quarantine, but they do need to take a day two test.

In other developments today:

  • NHS Covid vaccine pass app crashed for four hours – Brits stranded abroad and unable to fly;
  • Britain was told by a top expert to brace for an early flu season as fears mount that 60,000 people could die from flu this winter.

England registered 36,458 new infections, 2,581 cases were confirmed in Scotland, 2,266 were spotted in Wales and 1,471 in Northern Ireland.

Infections south of the border are fueling a surge in the UK, with England cases reaching the highest level since July 21, when 39,504 cases were registered.

The latest wave in the country peaked at about 50,000 in mid-July before leveling off. But the infection rate seems to be rising again.

Meanwhile, the number of positive tests in Scotland and Wales appears to be stable. Rates are rising in Northern Ireland.

And on October 8, the last date the numbers are available, infection rates rose week by week in every age group.

Some 8.2 million positive tests have been registered in the UK since the start of the pandemic.

But the real infection rate is many millions higher, due to the limited testing capacity at the start of the crisis and not everyone who contract the virus reports for a test.

Sir Patrick Vallance, No10’s chief scientific officer, said earlier this week that cases in the UK are “basically flat”, showing that there is a “balance” between immunity and the number of contacts people have.

But he warned that numbers can move “one way or the other,” so if everyone starts making twice as many contacts, the infections will “mount pretty quickly.”

So it’s a “balancing act” with people’s behavior and keeping immunity high, he said. The UK is “not out of the woods,” Sir Patrick added.

About 49.2 million first doses of the vaccine have been distributed and 45.2 million second doses have been administered.

The figures correspond to 85.6 percent of the over 12s with at least one shot and 78.7 percent who have been fully vaccinated.

But the Ministry of Health is not yet publishing daily figures on the number of Britons coming forward for booster shots.

ENGLAND: 36,458 positive tests recorded daily - the highest number since July 21, when 39,504 cases were recorded

ENGLAND: 36,458 positive tests recorded daily - the highest number since July 21, when 39,504 cases were recorded

ENGLAND: 36,458 positive tests recorded daily – the highest number since July 21, when 39,504 cases were recorded

SCOTLAND: 2,581 infections reported last day, as the infections seem to get out of hand.  Scotland had a month-long drop in rates after a spike sparked by students returning to classrooms

SCOTLAND: 2,581 infections reported last day, as the infections seem to get out of hand.  Scotland had a month-long drop in rates after a spike sparked by students returning to classrooms

SCOTLAND: 2,581 infections reported last day, as the infections seem to get out of hand. Scotland had a month-long drop in rates after a spike sparked by students returning to classrooms

WALES: registered 2,266 new infections and infections appear to be relatively flat in the country

WALES: registered 2,266 new infections and infections appear to be relatively flat in the country

WALES: registered 2,266 new infections and infections appear to be relatively flat in the country

NORTHERN IRELAND: Another 1,471 cases posted in the last 24 hours.  Infections have remained the same in the country all summer

NORTHERN IRELAND: Another 1,471 cases posted in the last 24 hours.  Infections have remained the same in the country all summer

NORTHERN IRELAND: Another 1,471 cases posted in the last 24 hours. Infections have remained the same in the country all summer

Britain told to brace for early flu season

Britain should prepare for an early flu outbreak this winter as cases are already rising in other countries, a top expert has warned.

Flu season in the UK usually lasts from September to March, but the virus usually doesn’t put pressure on the NHS until January.

The latest surveillance suggests that the number of cases has more than doubled in a fortnight, but still remains below the level seen from the same point of the 2019/2020 flu season. Health officials insist the virus is only circulating at “very low” levels.

dr. John McCauley, one of the world’s foremost flu scientists based at the Francis Crick Institute in London, warned that spikes in Croatia, India and China suggest there could be an earlier outbreak in the UK and other countries.

The outbreak in Croatia could act like a ‘canary in a coal mine’ as it is proof that flu is already present and ticking up in Europe.

Outbreaks in India and China show that flu remains in circulation in large populations and can be quickly exported to other countries by travelers.

He told MailOnline: “Over the next few weeks, we’ll be able to see if what we’re seeing now holds up. If so, we can expect an early flu season.”

Third doses for the over-50s, health professionals and those with underlying health conditions are an important part of the government’s strategy to contain the pandemic this winter.

Around 754 Covid-infected Britons sought NHS care, while a total of 7,011 patients have been hospitalized, the latest daily figures show.

Meanwhile, 136 fatalities were recorded in the four countries within 28 days of testing positive, bringing the total to 138,080.

Ministers are closely monitoring both figures, two of the measurements used to determine whether restrictions are needed in the coming months to quell a fourth wave.

If Covid starts to overwhelm the NHS, No10 would implement ‘Plan B’ measures, including mandatory face coverings in certain environments, work from home counseling and vaccine passports.

It’s because the NHS app today didn’t allow anyone to view their Covid vaccine cards for more than four hours, preventing holidaymakers from boarding flights.

The controversial software – which allows people to prove their vaccination status – did not show QR code passes due to “high traffic volumes.”

Users of the app started having problems before noon and the health department said they were investigating the issue. Shortly after 4:10 PM, the app started working again.

Desperate people who travel abroad claim they have had to miss their flight.

Meanwhile, one of the world’s foremost flu scientists told MailOnline to brace themselves for an early flu season.

The number of cases is already high in other countries, including Croatia, India and China, which could trigger an early outbreak in the UK and other countries.

dr. John McCauley, who is based at the Francis Crick Institute in London, told MailOnline: ‘We’ll be able to see if what we’re seeing now holds up in the coming weeks. If so, we can expect an early flu season.”

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