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BBC Breakfast: Louise speaks to doctor about Delta variant

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The Delta variant has accounted for 35,204 more Covid cases in the last week, reaching a total of 111, pharmacy tech home study course 157, according to data published by Public Health England (PHE). Most of these cases have been reported in England, where there’s been a total of 102,019 cases. But which areas of England have had the most cases reported?

The following 20 areas are the only parts of the country that have topped 1,000 infections:

  • Bolton 5,017
  • Manchester 4,100
  • Blackburn with Darwen 3,161
  • Leeds 3,079
  • Birmingham 2,589
  • Wigan 2,041
  • Salford 1,965
  • Bradford 1,699
  • Stockport 1,552
  • Kirklees 1,458
  • County Durham 1,424
  • Bury 1,346
  • Liverpool 1,245
  • Bedford 1,198
  • Rochdale 1,185
  • Trafford 1,170
  • Leicester 1,130
  • Cheshire East 1,123
  • Newcastle upon Tyne 1,110
  • Preston 1,032

Figures show the Delta variant now accounts for around 95 percent of new case sequences in the UK, but PHE said vaccines continue to have a “crucial effect on hospital admission and death”.

A further 514 people were admitted to hospital in England with COVID-19 in the week up to June 21.

Of these people, 304 were unvaccinated.

Dr Jenny Harries, chief executive of the UK Health Security Agency, said in a statement: “Through the success of our vaccination programme, data suggest we have begun to break the link between cases and hospitalisations. This is hugely encouraging news, but we cannot become complacent.

“Two doses of vaccine are far more effective against COVID-19 than a single dose, so please make sure that you come forward to get your second dose as soon as you are invited.

“Whilst vaccines provide excellent protection, they do not provide total protection, so it is still as important as ever that we continue to exercise caution.”

What are the symptoms of the Delta variant?

The classic signs of coronavirus reported since the start of the pandemic are a high temperature, a new, continuous cough, a loss or change to your sense of smell or taste.

But Professor Tim Spector, an epidemiologist and science writer, said since the start of May these symptoms are less common now.

The ZOE COVID app, which is in collaboration with King’s College London and Guy’s and St Thomas’ Hospitals, has been monitoring symptoms since the start of the pandemic.

And in its latest update, Professor Spector, who’s study lead, has now warned people to look out for other symptoms.

He said: “The data from the ZOE COVID Study has shown that there are over 20 different symptoms of COVID-19, not just the classic three: fever, cough and anosmia.

“The COVID-19 situation in the UK is different to last summer due to new variants and the vaccine roll out.

“We’ve found that the symptoms in younger people and post-vaccination are both different.

“People urgently need to know there are more than just the three classic symptoms.

“The top symptoms being currently logged in the ZOE app are; headache, runny nose, sneezing, fatigue and sore throat, which for many will feel more like a common cold.”

Professor Spector continued: “The earlier people can catch the infection, the quicker they can self-isolate until symptoms abate and stop the spread.

“We encourage anyone feeling under the weather to take a test as soon as they can and stay at home.”

Just as people were getting their heads around the Delta variant, reports have revealed another variant – the Delta plus – and now 42 cases have been found in the UK.

Studies are beginning to show this variant spreads more easily, binds more easily to lung cells, and is potentially resistant to monoclonal antibody therapy, which can help neutralise the virus.

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