Britain’s coronavirus plague growth SLOWS: Daily infections are up 3.6% on last week after seven days of double digit growth – as expert predicts UK will be ‘locked down for Christmas’ despite SAGE models that show NHS should cope

Britain’s Covid case crisis appears to be slowing, official data today showed as fears grow around the impending winter wave.

Department of Health bosses posted 44,985 new coronavirus infections, up 3.6 per cent on last week’s total of 43,423.

The single figure increase comes after seven days of infections spiking by at least 10 per cent, suggesting the recent uptick in cases may be beginning to slow.

And the number of people dying with the virus fell to 135 today. It was down 8.8 per cent on last Saturday’s toll of 148.

The figures come after a Government scientific adviser said he is ‘very fearful’ there will be another ‘lockdown Christmas’.

Professor Peter Openshaw, a member of the New and Emerging Respiratory Virus Threats Advisory Group (Nervtag) and SAGE subgroup CO-CIN, said case numbers and death rates are currently ‘unacceptable’.

But SAGE scientists insisted it was ‘highly unlikely’ that the NHS would be overwhelmed by the virus this winter even without restrictions.

Modelling by the group for England predicted that the combination of vaccine-acquired immunity and natural protection would be enough to keep hospital rates below levels seen during the second wave.

Boris Johnson yesterday resisted calls from health leaders for tighter restrictions despite the rising levels of infections.

Health Secretary Sajid Javid said new cases could reach 100,000 a day but Downing Street insisted there was still spare capacity in the NHS and that Plan B would only be activated if it came under ‘significant pressure’.

Meanwhile, it was revealed Brits may need three Covid vaccinations to go on holiday next summer but under-50s are unlikely to receive a booster until ‘well after Christmas.

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Source: Daily Mail