Hospitalisations rising as Covid-19 cases increase by almost 50% in a week
- Credit: PA
Havering’s Covid-19 infection rate is rising by a greater percentage with each passing day, according to the latest government data.
The latest verified figures end on December 8, when the borough hit its highest ever daily case count and infection rate.
Preliminary data for the following days suggests it is continuing to rise, breaking its own record every day.
Hospitalisations are already rising again, but are likely to be one or two weeks behind the infection rate, meaning local hospitals could be overwhelmed by Christmas – just as social distancing rules are set to be relaxed for five days.
On December 4, Havering had 364.1 cases per 100,000 people – already up 32 per cent on the previous week.
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On December 5, it rose by 4.4pc to 380.3 cases per 100,000.
On December 6, it rose 5.6pc to 401.5 - the highest infection rate Havering had ever recorded.
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On December 7, it was up another 7.9pc to 433.1 cases per 100,000. That day, it recorded 227 new cases – the most ever in a single day.
But on December 8 it rose yet again, this time by 8.7pc, to 470.8 cases per 100,000.
According to preliminary data, new cases have continued to rise every day.
On December 10, the last day of published preliminary figures, Havering recorded 251 new cases – setting a new record for the borough.
By December 8, hospitalisations had begun rising again after a period of decline.
The virus incubates for roughly ten days before causing symptoms, causing a delay between the period when it is spread and the period when that spread is detected.
It then often takes another week or more for symptoms to become so severe that a patient may require hospitalisation. This means hospitalisation figures typically increase in line with infection rates, but on a one-to-two-week delay.
On November 24, amid the second national lockdown, Havering had seen a 27.7pc decrease in infections – but the Barking, Havering and Redbridge University Hospitals NHS Trust (BHRUT) had so far only seen a 3pc reduction in hospital beds occupied by Covid-19 patients.
By December 1, Havering’s infection rate was climbing again, up 10pc on the previous week – but the hospitalisation rate was still falling, down by another 7.3pc.
However, by December 8, when the borough recorded a 48.5pc week-on-week increase in infections, BHRUT’s hospitalisation rate had begun to grow, up by 10.7pc in the same period.
On December 8, BHRUT had 238 beds occupied by Covid patients – just shy of its highest ever figure, 245, which was recorded on November 18.
On November 18, Havering’s Covid-19 infection rate was 387.6 cases per 100,000 people.
By December 8, it was more than 20pc higher than that – and still growing.
This week, Havering entered the top five most-infected boroughs in the UK.