London: Covid-19 deaths registered in England and Wales have fallen for the second week in a row, suggesting they were now on a downward trend, according to the UK’s Office for National Statistics (ONS).
The ONS on Tuesday said that some 592 deaths registered in the seven days to August 12 mentioned Covid on the death certificate, down 18 per cent on the previous week, reports dpa news agency.
Deaths had increased during June and July due to the wave of infections caused by the BA.4 and BA.5 Omicron subvariants of Covid-19.
But the latest figures confirm this wave peaked at 810 deaths in the week to July 29.
This is a lower peak than in the two previous Omicron waves earlier in 2022, both of which saw weekly death registrations climb to between 1,000 and 1,500.
All the Omicron waves have peaked well below the Alpha wave in January 2021, when weekly deaths reached nearly 8,500.
High levels of Covid antibodies among the population, either from vaccination or previous infection, mean the number of people seriously ill or dying from the virus this year has stayed low.
The total number of deaths registered in England and Wales in the week to August 12 was 10 per cent above the average for this time of year, the ONS said.
Deaths have been above average almost continuously since the end of March, following a period at the start of the year when no excess deaths were recorded.
Before 2022, death registrations were above average since the start of the pandemic, except for periods in summer 2020 and spring 2021.
As of Wednesday morning, the UK’s overall Covid-19 caseload and death toll stood at 23,460,787 and 187,018, respectiively.